(May 17, 2014) The singles finals are set in Rome on Sunday for the Italian Open. On the men’s side No. 1 Rafael Nadal will play No. 2 Novak Djokovic while top women’s player Serena Williams will face off against Italian Sara Errani.
Nadal faced little competition in his semifinal clash defeating Grigor Dimitrov 6-2, 6-2. It was the first match this week in which the Spaniard was not pushed to three sets.
“Today was a good confirmation that I really played better. A lot of positive things,” Nadal said in press. “(Djokovic) is playing great and it’s going to be a really tough match.”
Djokovic was pushed to three set by the hard-serving Canadian Milos Raonic 6-7 (5), 7-6 (4), 6-3.
“I can’t recall the last time when I was feeling so helpless in the return games,” Djokovic said of Raonic’s powerful serves. “It was brutal.”
The Serbian made an appeal for help for his home country hit by severe floods. “This is a total catastrophe of biblical proportions,” he said. “Half the country is in danger of not having electricity.”
Foe those wishing to help with a contribution to the relief and rescue efforts: Novak Djokovic Foundation’s website.
Nadal leads his head-to-head record against Djokovic 22-18. Nadal is looking for his eight Italian Open title while Djokovic is seeking his third. Both men last played each other in late March in the Sony Open final where Djokovic won.
Serena Williams recovered from losing the second set to stop Ana Ivanovic 6-1, 3-6, 6-1. The win for Williams avenged a loss to the Serbian in the round of 16 at this year’s Australian Open. Williams is seeking a third Italian Open title, but she’ll have to beat an Italian to get it.
“She’s just taken her game to a whole new level and she has so much confidence beating two really good top-10 players and two really great clay-court players,” Williams said about Errani. “So I have a lot of work to do tomorrow. It’s not going to be easy. And she has nothing to lose and she has the crowd behind her. So it’s going to be a really tough match for me.”
INTERNAZIONALI BNL D’ITALIA
May 12-18, 2014
Results – Saturday, May 17, 2014
WTA Singles – Semifinals
(1) Serena Williams (USA) d. (11) Ana Ivanovic (SRB) 61 36 61
(10) Sara Errani (ITA) d. (6) Jelena Jankovic (SRB) 63 75
WTA Doubles – Semifinals
(2) Errani/Vinci (ITA/ITA) d. (8) Goerges/Groenefeld (GER/GER) 62 61
(4) Peschke/Srebotnik (CZE/SLO) d. Medina Garrigues/Shvedova (ESP/KAZ) 76(6) 64
ATP Singles – Semifinals
 R Nadal (ESP) d  G Dimitrov (BUL) 62 62
 N Djokovic (SRB) d  M Raonic (CAN) 67(5) 76(4) 63
ATP Doubles – Semifinals
 D Nestor (CAN) / N Zimonjic (SRB) d  B Bryan (USA) / M Bryan (USA) 76(3) 46 12-10
R Haase (NED) / F Lopez (ESP) d G Dimitrov (BUL) / L Rosol (CZE) 62 64
SCHEDULE – SUNDAY, 18 MAY 2014
CENTRALE start 1:30 pm
WTA –  S Williams (USA) vs  S Errani (ITA)
Not Before 4:00 pm
ATP –  R Nadal (ESP) vs  N Djokovic (SRB)
PIETRANGELI start 2:30 pm
 D Nestor (CAN) / N Zimonjic (SRB) vs R Haase (NED) / F Lopez (ESP)
NB End of Men’s Singles Final –  K Peschke (CZE) / K Srebotnik (SLO) vs  S Errani (ITA) / R Vinci (ITA)