Alexander Zverev fought off the pain of blood under his toe nails to beat Carlos Alcaraz 6-1, 6-3, 6-7 (2), 6-4 in a roller coaster match at 1:20 a.m. local time

The match looked all over when the No. 6 seed was up a break in the third set, just after midnight local time, but he missed the chance to serve out for a straight sets win, when Alcaraz broke for the first time.

The German eventually came out on top winning the fourth set 6-4.

This will be Zverev’s seventh excursion to a Grand Slam semi-final, surpassing compatriot Michael Stich’s record, though still a long way short of Boris Becker’s total of eighteen.

It was also his first win over a top-five player during a Grand Slam.

After his match Zverev said “He’s (Medvedev) has been kicking my a**e a lot the last year or so. But maybe this’ll be it, this’ll be the place,”

“I’m playing one of the best players in the world, especially over the last two years… he’s won two Grand Slams”

“When you’re up 6-1, 6-3, 5-2, you start thinking. We’re all human. It’s a great honour to play against guys like this and when you’re so close to winning your brain starts going and it’s not always helpful.

“But I’m happy that I fought back quite well in the fourth set and didn’t let go.”

“I have a lot of blood under my toenails, that’s quite painful,” he added.

“But you know what, I would much rather feel the way I’m feeling right now with a bit of pain here and there and be in the semi-finals than be at home.

“I’m fine, and I’m happy to be here and ready to get going.”

Zverev last made the semis in Melbourne in 2020 and has only once been to a Grand Slam final, losing in the 2020 US Open to Dominic Thiem, squandering a two sets to love lead in the process.