Novak and Fabio Fognini beat doubles specialists Jean-Julien Rojer and Horia Tecau 7-6 (6), 2-6, 10-6 to advance into the last four at the BNP Paribas Open. The Serbian/Italian combination play no.6 seeds Lukasz Kubot (POL) and Marcelo Melo (BRA) for a place in the final
Kei's withdrawal sends the defending champion into last 4 where he will face Rafael Nadal (ESP, 4).
Novak will make his return from injury in Serbia's Davis Cup tie against Spain in Belgrade (April 7-9).
World no.1 moved one step closer to his 13th Grand Slam on Tuesday after Jo-Wilfried Tsonga retired in the third set (6-3, 6-2).