Czech No. 1 Tomas Berdych became the second victim of terrible luck on Friday afternoon, as he was forced to withdraw from his scheduled semi-final match-up against Rafael Nadal due to a stomach virus. Berdych, who was set to return to the Top 5 in Monday, appeared to have suffered from a surprise case of gastroenteritis.
“I was feeling really in good shape to go and play Rafa,” said Berdych, who began feeling unwell on Friday morning. “I’m really very disappointed with the way that I have to be sitting here and talking, not even as the one who lost and didn’t even have a chance to hit the ball.”
This marks the first time in 46 years that two semi-final walkovers took place at the same event.
Berdych defeated the resurgent Ukrainian Alexandr Dolgopolov in straight sets to set up the anticipated clash with Nadal. With his withdrawal from the event, a 40th encounter between the top two competitors in the Emirates ATP Rankings, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic, is now scheduled for the final on Sunday.