Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal can set up a delectable U.S. Open final between the top two players in the world with 2013 grand slam bragging rights at stake by posting victories in Saturday's semi-finals.
Australian Open champion Djokovic and French Open winner Nadal have designs on adding a second grand slam to their honours this year but first must get past familiar foes in Swiss Stanislas Wawrinka and France's Richard Gasquet, respectively.
Top-seeded Djokovic, who advanced to his 14th successive grand slam semi-final with a four-set victory over Mikhail Youzhny, and Nadal, a straight-sets winner over fellow-Spaniard Tommy Robredo, have both lost only one set in the tournament.
The darkhorse challengers, however, are at the top of their games, both wielding lethal one-handed backhands as a key part of their arsenal.
Nadal said there was no danger of him looking past longtime friend Gasquet and at a possible marquee clash with Djokovic.
"I hope to be ready to play a good match against Richard. If not, I will not have the chance to play the final," the second-seeded Spaniard said.
"If I don't play great match against Richard, I will see the final on TV. I am focused only to play great match in semi-finals against Richard."
The eighth-seeded Gasquet went five sets to beat big-serving Milos Raonic of Canada in the fourth round, and went the distance again to eliminate fourth-seeded Spaniard David Ferrer in the quarters.
Wawrinka caused an even bigger splash as he improved his 2013 record to 41-15 by ousting Wimbledon winner and defending U.S. Open champion Andy Murray of Britain in three breezy sets in his quarter-finals tilt.
The Swiss said he was most proud of how he dealt with the pressure of playing against Murray, since in the past he has often been plagued by nerves.
"My level of tennis right now is quite good. I'm really confident with myself, with my game," said 28-year-old Wawrinka, whose victory over third seed Murray lifted him to his first grand slam semi-final.
Djokovic knows first-hand how dangerous Wawrinka can be, having gone through a titanic five-set struggle against him in the fourth round at