Kevin Anderson might have faced down one of the greatest players of all time in Roger Federer and found a state of self-belief to get him over the line, and he will need to dig every bit as deep again to snap a five-match losing streak to John Isner to reach a second Slam final.
In the end, and to the surprise of no one, they did not come close to finishing after two hours and 54 minutes of play on Friday night.
"You feel like it's a draw between the two of us, but somebody has to win".
The South African was the better player on the court and he finally broke Isner's serve in game 29, closing the match with a hold in the following game to win the third longest singles match in the history of tennis and book his place in the first Wimbledon final. That's also the past year Djokovic and Nadal met at the All-England Club, with Djokovic winning 6-4, 6-1, 1-6, 6-3 in the final.More news: This is Paul Manafort behind bars
A showdown between two tennis skyscrapers - with Isner topping the 6 foot 8 Anderson by two inches - predictably featured three tiebreaks and 102 thunderbolt aces but it was the 32-year-old South African who delivered the knockout blow.
The ridiculous length of the Anderson-Isner clash left Nadal and Djokovic waiting until 8pm local time before stepping on court for their box office semi-final.
But Isner, after missing his first serve, sent up a bold swat of a second serve of 129mph to level at deuce.
"Honestly, I really hope this is a bit of a sign for grand slams to change the five sets".
Our recommended way to watch Nadal vs Djokovic online without cable is via Hulu Live TV with Wimbledon coverage.
The pair have only met twice at Wimbledon, Nadal winning their 2007 semi-final when Djokovic retired hurt, the Serb gaining revenge in the 2011 final.
"I'm really not thinking about being an underdog or being a favourite", he said. Even Anderson said he could feel during his match that the crowd would rather be watching the next one.