Roger Federer's path to his eighth Wimbledon title just became clearer with the two players seeded ahead of him falling out.
The third-seeded Federer beat Milos Raonic in straight sets on Wednesday 6-4, 6-2, 7-6 (4). His victory came minutes after second-seeded Novak Djokovic retired from his quarterfinal match against Tomas Berdych with an elbow injury.
Djokovic, a three-time champion at the All England Club, had a trainer work on his right elbow after the first set ended. He also had a trainer work on his right shoulder near the end of his fourth-round victory on Tuesday.
"It's the elbow. Over a year and a half it's been bothering me," Djokovic said after the match. "I probably spent about two and a half hours on the table today. ... There's no way out if you don't feel fit. I'm going to talk to the specialist to find a long-term solution to solve it."
Djokovic stopped the quarterfinal match while trailing 7-6 (2), 2-0.
At the end of his news conference, speaking in Serbian and translated through an interpreter, Djokovic alluded to the possibility that he could take a long break.
That would be a first for Djokovic, who has been one of the best players on tour for about a decade. He won the first of his six Australian Open titles in 2008, and won four straight majors from the 2015 Wimbledon tournament through last year's French Open.
He hasn't won one since.
"The specialists that I've talked with, they haven't been really too clear, mentioning also surgery, mentioning different options. Nobody was very clear in what needs to be done," Djokovic said. "Yeah, I guess the break is something that I will have to consider right now."
Federer will play Berdych in the semifinals as he chases his first Wimbledon title since 2012. This will be his 12th semifinal appearance at Wimbledon. Berdych reached the Wimbledon final in 2010, losing to Rafael Nadal.
The 35-year-old Federer can identify with the physical woes of Djokovic and Murray, having gone through the same thing last year.
"Last year I had a hard, hard time practicing through the clay-court season. The grass-court season was difficult because of the back issues I had, and the knee issues. I was really lacking practice, really," he said.
"Then the matches, I could never really play quite so freely last year just because, you know, I'm more focused on how the knee's behaving rather than how I need to hit my forehand or backhand, or what's not going to be good for my opponent. This year I'm just a normal tennis player again where I can focus on tactics. I think that's the difference.
"I'm playing very well. I'm rested. I'm fresh. I'm confident, too. Then great things do happen. Confidence is a huge thing."
Raonic said after the match that Federer is moving well, but that's not the only thing he has going for him.
"I think the thing I was most impressed with, at least the years I've been on tour, he was extremely sharp mentally always in the right moments, just always on top of things," he said of Federer. "He kept a very high gear the whole entire time without giving many real glimpses. I think that was the most sort of defeating thing."
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.