Indian Wells: Rafael Nadal withdraws from Roger Federer semi-final

Roger Federer 'Matches against Rafael Nadal bring extra energy'

Nadal comes into the match with some injury concerns, as he appeared to tweak his knee during his quarterfinal win over Karen Khachanov on Friday.

"I am used to playing with some issues, so I just tried to be focused".

Nadal had been set to play longtime rival Roger Federer later Saturday.

Nadal now leads 23-15 in their head-to-head, but Federer has won the last five of their meetings. "Of course my goal and my idea is to be ready for tomorrow", Nadal said. You have no choice. "He's at a higher level than he was at the Australian Open... especially in a place like Indian Wells, where he feels comfortable, he's clearly very tough to play".

He seems to me very good. The current world number two said he hopes to meet the Swiss great for the first time since the Shanghai Masters in October 2017.

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A tight start to the second followed and Nadal's break at 3-2 was swiftly cancelled out, with Khachanov confidently holding his own before teeing up a set point opportunity, squandered with a wayward drop shot.

"He's changing directions all the time (with his serve) so it's really hard to read it".

The longtime foes have amassed 37 Grand Slam titles between them - Federer with 20 and Nadal with 17 - and built a unique relationship over 15 years and 38 prior matches, not to mention countless promotional and charitable activities off the court together.

However, Federer and Nadal got to this appointment in a completely different state.

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