Paire defeats Goffin in Metz
Originally published on 22/09/17 00:00
The mercurial Frenchman saved a match-point before defeating top seed and former champion, David Goffin, 7-6(3) 5-7 7-6(7) in two hours and 24 minutes.
The home favourite will take on Nikoloz Basilashvili, who overcame Denis Istomin 7-5 6-3, in the last four on Saturday afternoon.
Mischa Zverev is just one victory away from reaching his second final of the season. The German edged a tight contest with Kenny De Schepper 7-5 7-6(4).
Up next for the Zverev is his compatriot Peter Gojowczyk. The world No.95 enjoyed a comfortable 6-2 6-4 success over Marius Copil.
At the ATP 250 event in St. Petersburg, Damir Dzumhur ended Liam Broady’s impressive run at the quarter-final stage. The Bosnian, who will crack the top 50 for the first time on Monday, was a 6-3 2-6 6-4 winner.
Jan-Lennard Struff will provide Dzumhur with his next challenge. The German shocked No.2 seed, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, 3-6 6-3 6-2.
There were no such difficulties for the top seed. Roberto Bautista Agut dropped just three games as he dismissed Viktor Troicki 6-1 6-2 in just 58 minutes.
The Spaniard will take on Fabio Fognini for an eighth time in the last four. The Italian was outstanding in his dominant 6-3 6-0 success over Ricardas Berankis.
After the first day of action at the Laver Cup in Prague, Europe is firmly in control.
The hosts, under the guidance of Bjorn Borg, hold a 3-1 overnight advantage after singles victories for Marin Cilic, Dominic Thiem and Alexander Zverev.
The Rest of the World got their side of scoreboard in the final rubber of the day as Nick Kyrgios and Jack Sock downed Rafael Nadal and Tomas Berdych in an entertaining doubles contest.
Match 1: Marin Cilic defeats Frances Tiafoe 7-6(3) 7-6(0)
The Croatian recovered from a break down in the second set to give the European team the perfect start on an eye-catching all-black hard-court.
“He’s very easy-going and very stable,” said Cilic about his legendary Swedish Captain. “He definitely gave me good advice at good times and supported me. He has done really well and I enjoyed my time on the court with him.”
Match 2: Dominic Thiem defeats John Isner 6-7(15) 7-6(2) (10-7)
The Austrian showed his battling qualities as he recovered from the disappointment of losing a bruising opening set to secure a big win for Europe.
The first set tiebreak lasted 21 minutes and 32 points were played, but it was the American – assisted by his booming serve – who emerged victorious.
Thiem responded impressively and some fine returning enabled him to hit back and force a champions' tiebreak. It looked like Isner was going to nab a vital point for his team when he moved 4-0 ahead, however he failed to build on a promising start and his clinical opponent made him pay.
“It can always go super fast in the champions' tiebreak, but I wanted to win the match really badly,” remarked Thiem. “The first set tiebreak was 32 points and it was really tough to lose. I didn’t want to lose the match at all and I’m happy with what I did in the end.”
Match 3: Alexander Zverev defeats Denis Shapovalov 7-6(3) 7-6(5)
The tiebreak trend continued into the evening session as Zverev squeezed past Shapovalov in straight sets.
The Canadian had been looking to gain revenge after being beaten by the German at the Rogers Cup in Montreal last month but he was unable prevail in the battle of the young guns.
Match 4: Nick Kyrgios & Jack Sock defeat Rafael Nadal & Tomas Berdych 6-3 6-7(9) (10-7)
It was essential that Sock and Kyrgios gained a point for their team – and the pair delivered. The duo, good friends off the court, raised their level in the champions’ tiebreak to finally give their vocal Captain, John McEnroe, something to build on.