ROME – Serbia’s Novak Djokovic, the current world number one in men’s tennis, is through to his seventh career and third consecutive Rome Masters final after beating Kei Nishikori of Japan 2-6, 6-4, 7-6 (7-5) in the semi-final late Saturday.

Just a week after defeating Nishikori in the Madrid Masters semi-final, Djokovic won after three hours and four minutes of play and now has a 9-2 head-to-head record against the Japanese.

After losing the first set, Djokovic let slip a 4-1 lead in the third set and then went 3-1 down in the tie-break, but eventually managed to prove once again that he is at his best when it matters the most.

In a bid to claim his fifth Rome title, just like in Madrid, Djokovic will face Briton Andy Murray, against whom he is 23-2 head-to-head.

The prize money in Madrid is EUR 2.4 million.