US Open 2014 Men's Semifinals: Nishikori vs. Djokovic Preview and Prediction

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US Open 2014 Men's Semifinals: Nishikori vs. Djokovic Preview and Prediction
Mike Groll/Associated Press
Kei Nishikori during his quarterfinals match against Stan Wawrinka at the 2014 U.S. Open.

When Kei Nishikori takes on Novak Djokovic in the semifinals of the 2014 U.S. Open, get ready for a marathon between a couple of sprinters.  

It's a battle between a first-time semifinalist and a seven-time Grand Slam winner. Top-ranked Djokovic will be trying to reach his fifth consecutive U.S. Open final.

Nishikori became the first Japanese player to reach the semifinals of a Grand Slam since Jiro Satoh at Wimbledon in 1933. Djokovic is trying to become the only man to win two Slams this year.

While the match's outcome is uncertain, one thing you can expect is that two of the quickest players on the tour will leave few balls uncontested.

Unlike the rivalries shared by members of the Big Four, Nishikori and Djokovic have little history. They have played just twice.

Based on how they have performed this tournament, both better pack extra sneakers. Shoe tread is going to suffer. 

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