ATP

Struff reaches maiden final as Basilashvili awaits in Munich

By Sports Desk May 01, 2021

Jan-Lennard Struff is through to his first final on the ATP Tour after ending Ilya Ivashka's impressive run at the BMW Open in Munich.

Struff had lost in his previous seven semi-final appearances and it appeared the streak may continue when he quickly fell 3-0 behind against his opponent from Belarus.

However, qualifier Ivashka – who had knocked out top seed Alexander Zverev in the previous round – only managed to win two more games in the remainder of a contest that spanned 87 minutes.

A 6-4 6-1 win for Struff sets up a showdown with Nikoloz Basilashvili, who crushed Casper Ruud 6-1 6-2 to progress through from the other half of the draw.

"I am happy to have reached my first final on home soil in Germany and I will try my best tomorrow," seventh seed Struff said after Saturday's match.

Both Basilashvili and Ruud had completed their quarter-final ties earlier on Saturday, but it was the former who coped better with a quick return to action on the clay court, easing to victory in 71 minutes.

At the Estoril Open, Cameron Norrie moved a step closer to a first ATP title after withstanding a barrage of aces to overcome the big-serving Marin Cilic in two sets.

Norrie managed to save five of the six break-point opportunities on his own serve as he eventually prevailed 7-6 (7-5) 7-5. His only previous experience of a final on the ATP Tour came back in 2019, when he lost to Tennys Sandgren at the ASB Classic in Auckland.

"[Marin] was serving great and it was really tricky to get his first serve back. I am fortunate to get through and I am just happy to be in my second final," the Briton said in his on-court interview.

Albert Ramos-Vinolas is the last player standing in his way, the Spaniard battling back after losing his serve in both sets to beat compatriot Alejandro Davidovich Fokina 6-1 6-4.

Related items

  • Teenager Tauson finds form that saw off Raducanu to reach Luxembourg final Teenager Tauson finds form that saw off Raducanu to reach Luxembourg final

    Danish teenager Clara Tauson set up a Luxembourg Open final showdown with Jelena Ostapenko, showing off the prowess that saw her beat Emma Raducanu in Chicago prior to the US Open.

    Raducanu recovered from that setback in the final of August's Challenger tournament in the Windy City, charging to a shock Flushing Meadows triumph, but fellow 18-year-old Tauson awaits her big breakthrough at the majors.

    Tauson took down a former French Open runner-up and current Olympic silver medallist in reaching the Luxembourg final, beating Marketa Vondrousova in three sets, and now must overcome a player who has been champion at Roland Garros in Ostapenko.

    She prised the vital break of serve in the ninth game of the decider against Vondrousova, upping the power in her shots, before serving out for a 6-4 2-6 6-4 victory.

    Tauson will be going for a second title of the year, having won the Lyon Open in March.

    Defending champion Ostapenko raced to a 6-1 5-1 lead over Liudmila Samsonova but then began to misfire and had to scramble from the brink of being taken to a third set.

    Ostapenko eventually prevailed 6-1 7-6 (7-4), having trailed 4-1 in the tie-break, and she will attempt to scoop a fifth WTA title on Sunday. Her most recent came at Eastbourne in the week before Wimbledon.

    At the WTA tournament in the Slovenian town of Portoroz, Sunday's final will feature American Alison Riske and Italy's Jasmine Paolini.

    Riske denied Slovenian Kaja Juvan a place in a home final, earning a 6-0 6-4 win in their semi-final, while Paolini sprang a shock by beating Kazakhstan's Yulia Putintseva 1-6 6-3 6-4.

  • More frustration for Bencic in Luxembourg More frustration for Bencic in Luxembourg

    Top seed Belinda Bencic crashed out of the Luxembourg Open with a straight-sets defeat to Liudmila Samsonova.

    Bencic, the Olympic champion, had designs on winning her first WTA title of 2021 having lost in the final in Adelaide and Berlin during the calendar year.

    However, there was more frustration for the Swiss, beaten in the quarter-finals of the US Open by champion Emma Raducanu, as she was swept aside 6-1 6-4 by Samsonova.

    It is the second-best win of Samsonova's career by ranking, the Russian having defeated Kiki Bertens, then world number 11, back in March in Miami.

    She will face Jelena Ostapenko for a place in the final after the former French Open champion saw off Alize Cornet 7-6 (8-6) 6-2.

    Marketa Vondrousova twice trailed by a break in the first set against Elise Mertens but battled back to see off the second seed 7-5 6-2. She now faces a semi-final with Clara Tauson, the teenager having breezed past Maria Bouzkova 6-3 6-2 as she seeks her third title of the year.

    At the Zavarovalnica Sava Portoroz, Kaja Juvan will face Alison Riske after the Slovenian won two matches on Friday. Jasmine Paolini will meet Yulia Putintseva in the other last-four clash.

     

  • Olympic champion Bencic off to winning start at Luxembourg Open Olympic champion Bencic off to winning start at Luxembourg Open

    Belinda Bencic made a winning return to action as the Olympic champion defeated Zarina Diyas to seal a quarter-final spot at the Luxembourg Open.

    Bencic, the unlikely successor in Tokyo, triumphed in straight sets 6-1 6-3 on Thursday to tee up a last-eight encounter with Liudmila Samsonova, who the Swiss lost to in Berlin earlier this year.

    It was a welcome return to form for world number 12 Bencic after her defeat to eventual champion Emma Raducanu in the US Open quarter-finals last week.

    Joining the top seed in the quarters is defending Luxembourg Open champion Jelena Ostapenko, who needed three sets to overcome Arianne Hartono.

    Second seed Elise Mertens also progressed, though she had to come from behind to beat Aliaksandra Sasnovich 3-6 6-2 7-5.

    In Thursday's other last-16 tie, Marie Bouzkova beat Greet Minnen to round off the quarter-finals line up.

    Meanwhile, Sorana Cirstea and Jasmine Paolini will meet in the Zavarovalnica Sava Portoroz quarter-finals after respective victories over Tereza Martincova and Anna Kalinskaya.

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.