ATP Doha - Thursday Schedule: Novak Djokovic faces Basilashvili

ATP Doha Novak Djokovic overcomes stern Basilashvili test to reach semis

Novak Djokovic took titles at both Wimbledon as well as the US Open and also made the finals in London, where he fell to Alexander Zverev at the ATP World Tour Finals.

World number one Djokovic, who was pushed to the limit in his last two matches in Doha by Marton Fucsovics and Nikoloz Basilashvili, failed to find a way past a determined Bautista Agut who won 3-6 7-6 (6) 6-4 in two hours and 35 minutes.

After losing the first set on Friday evening, the seventh-seeded Spaniard prevailed in the tie-break to take the second set and began the third by breaking Djokovic's serve, reports Efe news.

However, the Serb, twice a previous tournament victor in Doha, remains the overwhelming favourite to win the tournament and now has a 15-1 record overall in Doha. "I knew that he's playing probably the tennis of his life in the past 10 months, and he's definitely one of the greatest hitters in the game".

He will play the Czech Republic's Tomas Berdych in Saturday's final.

"I feel I have a gear or two (to go) up still", said Djokovic.

Nadal, who claimed his 17th Grand Slam title at Roland Garros previous year, has not played a competitive match since September.

There was little sign of an upset when Djokovic led by a set and a break but the Spaniard upped his aggression, using his flat cross-court groundstrokes to push the top seed back.

"He has done the comebacks for so many times in his career that you always believe that he can do it again", said Djokovic.

"Sport needs Rafa, no question about it".

"I think Stan is a really good player".

The grand slam in Melbourne is the primary focus for all players at this time of the year, and they won't do anything to compromise their preparations for that event. Among their most memorable matches was the 2012 Australian Open final, lasting nearly six hours and won by the Serb.

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