Felix Auger-Aliassime will meet in-form defending champion Gael Monfils in the Rotterdam Open final after both players won their last-four encounters in straight sets.

Canadian teenager Auger-Aliassime will be seeking his first ATP Tour title after losing all three of his showpiece matches in his breakout campaign last year.

He sealed his place in the final with a 7-6 (7-2) 6-4 victory over Pablo Carreno Busta in a contest lasting one hour and 49 minutes on Saturday.

Unseeded Auger-Aliassime sent down 16 aces, one of which came on match point, and lost only three of his 48 points on first serve, saving all of the four break points he faced in an impressive outing.

"I was serving the best I've ever served in that first set and then played a solid tie-break," he said after reaching his first final on a hard court.

"In the second set, things got interesting with that long third game [when Auger-Aliassime broke]. I was thinking, 'If this goes my way, it might be tough for him'. So, I really pushed to get through."

Monfils is eyeing back-to-back triumphs, having come into this tournament after winning the Open Sud de France on home soil last week.

He defeated Filip Krajinovic in the semi-finals there and repeated the trick against the Serbian this time, winning 6-4 7-6 (7-5) in a display that saw him hit 35 winners.

"It would be great [to win this title again]," said the Frenchman, who like Auger-Aliassime sealed his victory with an ace.

"It would be unbelievable. It would be the first time to win two titles in a row and actually even the first time to win two titles in the same season, so it would be huge for me."

Monfils, who only gave up one break point against Krajinovic, has never played Auger-Aliassime before.

"Felix is a great guy, a humble guy," said Monfils.

"He is very strong, very talented guy. Definitely, I expect a tough match, but a cool match because I think we might see him for a long time in this stage of tournaments."

Defending champion Gael Monfils continued his hot-streak with a convincing 7-6 (7-5) 6-2 victory over Dan Evans in the Rotterdam Open quarter-finals.

The Frenchman, winner of the Open sud de France last week, made it seven wins in a row by overcoming Evans in one hour and 52 minutes.

Next up in the last four is Filip Krajinovic, who upset the form book to overcome Andrey Rublev 7-6 (7-2) 6-4. 

Felix Auger-Aliassime defeated Aljaz Bedene and will face Pablo Carreno Busta, who needed three sets to see off Jannik Sinner, in the other semi-final.

Stefanos Tsitsipas became the latest seed to crash out of the Rotterdam Open as Jannik Sinner claimed his first top-10 win on Thursday.

After top seed Daniil Medvedev departed the competition a day earlier, Tsitsipas and David Goffin - seeded second and fourth respectively - each suffered upsets to blow the bottom half of the draw wide open.

Slovenia's Aljaz Bedene recorded the biggest win of his career as he cut down Tsitsipas in straight sets, his second triumph over a top-10 player clinched by a 7-5 6-4 scoreline.

"I tried to stay focused, and I delivered," Bedene said shortly after a stunning winner down the line saw him successfully serve out for the match.

"I actually served really well when it was important and kept my cool really, because I was feeling that he [Tsitsipas] was pressuring sometimes.

"I had to stay focused and cool and play my shots, and I delivered. I'm happy with that."

The world number 52 saved five break points in the opener before claiming his first opportunity, and he conceded: "I think he [Tsitsipas] was probably the better player for most of the first set.

"He was serving really well, and I didn't play my game - especially on his service points. I stayed tough, which I had to do, otherwise it would go the other way. I guess the break gave me a boost of confidence."

Bedene will play Felix Auger-Aliassime in the quarter-finals, with the winner potentially meeting NextGen champion Sinner - matched with Pablo Carreno Busta - in the last four.

Sinner, still just 18, came up with 27 winners to see off 10th-ranked Goffin 7-6 (9-7) 7-5.

"I feel great, especially now in this moment," the Italian said, according to quotes on the ATP Tour website. "It was not easy playing against him. He is very solid, so you sometimes go for a winner or change the rhythm.

"It feels like a normal victory, but sometimes you play better than others. It's all about improving and testing where you are."

Reigning champion Gael Monfils prolonged his title defence, beating countryman Gilles Simon 6-4 6-1.

Seventh seed Andrey Rublev also advanced, while Vasek Pospisil could not build on his shock defeat of Medvedev, going down 6-4 7-6 (9-7) to Filip Krajinovic.

Gael Monfils will face Vasek Pospisil in the final of the Open Sud de France after the home favourite clinched a straight-sets win over Filip Krajinovic.

Seeking his third title at the event, world number nine Monfils triumphed 7-6 (7-4) 6-2 in 82 minutes against the Serbian.

Monfils saved all three break points against Krajinovic in an impressive victory that maintains France's perfect record of ensuring a home player reaches the final of the Montpellier tournament.

The 2010 and 2014 champion will meet Pospisil on Sunday after the Canadian defeated David Goffin in three sets.

Goffin served for the match in the decider but lost three decisive games in a row as Pospisil triumphed 6-3 1-6 7-5 in two hours and 21 minutes.

At the Pune Open, Australia's James Duckworth was beaten 7-6 (7-2) 6-4 by Egor Gerasimov in the semi-finals.

The Belarusian dropped only five points behind his first serve as he reached a maiden ATP Tour final, where he will face Jiri Vesely.

Vesely saved match points for the second round in a row, outlasting second seed Ricardas Berankis 6-7 (8-10) 7-6 (7-3) 7-6 (9-7) in a draining encounter to secure a first final in nearly five years.

Top seed Gael Monfils is the only home hope still standing at the Open Sud de France after beating Norbert Gombos in straight sets to reach the semi-finals.

The world number nine downed Slovakian Gombos 6-3 6-4 in Montpellier on Friday to stay in contention to win the tournament for a third time.

Filip Krajinovic stands in the way of Monfils and a place in the final after the seventh seed accounted for Gregoire Barrere 6-2 7-5.

Vasek Pospisil moved into the last four when Richard Gasquet retired at 6-1 1-0 down in his homeland due to an abdominal injury.

David Goffin will take on the Canadian after the second seed saw off Pierre-Hugues Herbert 6-4 7-6 (7-5).

James Duckworth reached his maiden ATP Tour semi-final with a 6-3 7-6 (7-4) defeat of qualifier Roberto Marcora at the Pune Open.

The 96-ranked Australia will come up against Egor Gerasimov, who came from a set down to beat Kwon Soon-woo 4-6 7-6 (7-1) 6-4.

Jiri Vesely and Ricardas Berankis will contest the other semi-final after getting past Ilya Ivashka and Yuichi Sugita respectively.

Roger Federer has no desire to revisit the last time he played John Millman at a major but insists he'll be ready for the home favourite at the Australian Open on Friday.

Federer made serene progress into round three in Melbourne with a 6-1 6-4 6-1 defeat of Filip Krajinovic and will now face Millman, a 6-4 7-5 6-3 victor over Hubert Hurkacz.

Their only previous grand slam meeting came at the 2018 US Open when the Australian won a round of 16 encounter in four sets in blistering heat in New York.

Asked if that match had pushed him further than any other physically, he said: "Yeah, definitely. I don't know anything remotely close. I was just happy it was over.

"I never had that [before]. I rather go back in time [and think I'd like to] play that match again. But I don't have that feeling about that match. I was just happy the US Open was over and I could focus.

"I think it was a combination of many things that went wrong for me on that day, plus the opponent was ready and tough as nails.

"I have no regrets. I tried everything in the match itself, it was just not meant to be that day. I hit the wall."

Conditions in Melbourne have been much kinder for Federer so far, both meteorologically and in terms of the draw.

The third seed was barely tested by first-round opponent Steve Johnson or Krajinovic, but rubbished suggestions that would leave him undercooked.

"I prefer this much more than being overcooked," said the Swiss.

"I prefer it this way because you have always extra left in the tank if you need it."

Federer is likely to have to dig deeper against Millman, especially as he may be in the unusual position of not being the crowd favourite.

Millman has already suggested the match should be moved away from Rod Laver Arena due to the number of corporate fans that inhabit the main show court at Melbourne Park - a request that is likely to fall on deaf ears - but Federer is more than happy to play in a raucous atmosphere.

He said: "I'm always happy when the crowd gets involved.

"I don't choose which court I play on. I don't know if he was joking or if he was serious [about moving].

"You would think a match like this should be played on Rod Laver Arena maybe. I don't know if the other seeds have good match-ups as well.

"He knows Margaret Court Arena better [and] Melbourne Arena but I haven't thought about it.

"I figured this was always going to be on Rod Laver Arena but I'm ready to go anywhere, whatever it takes."

Roger Federer continued his perfect record in the Australian Open second round with an impressive win over Filip Krajinovic on Wednesday.

Federer moved into the third round in Melbourne for the 21st straight year by beating Krajinovic 6-1 6-4 6-1 on Rod Laver Arena.

The Swiss great has never lost before the third round at the year's first grand slam and he retained that record with another strong performance.

Federer quickly put Krajinovic on the back foot and while his level dropped slightly, the 20-time grand slam champion was in fine form to progress after one hour and 32 minutes.

He stamped his authority early, breaking in the second game, which featured a brilliant backhand pass down the line.

It was 4-0 after just 13 minutes as Federer produced a forehand winner to break again and take complete control of the contest and the first set was over soon after.

Federer broke again to begin the second set as his flawless display left Krajinovic struggling to find answers, while he produced a stunning cross-court forehand winner on the run in the fifth game.

But as Federer's incredibly high level started to drop, Krajinovic pounced to break back in the eighth game when the six-time Australian Open champion sent a backhand long.

Federer restored his lead in the next game when Krajinovic netted a backhand volley and made no mistake in serving out the second set.

For the third straight set, Federer broke in Krajinovic's first service game, handed the advantage following a double fault.

Krajinovic needed treatment on his right arm early in the third set, but that did little to slow Federer, who advanced to a meeting with John Millman.

 

STATISTICAL BREAKDOWN
Roger Federer [3] bt Filip Krajinovic 6-1 6-4 6-1

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS
Federer – 42/14
Krajinovic – 22/24

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS
Federer – 14/0
Krajinovic – 4/2

BREAK POINTS WON
Federer – 7/14
Krajinovic – 1/3

FIRST SERVE PERCENTAGE
Federer – 69
Krajinovic – 74

PERCENTAGE OF POINTS WON ON FIRST/SECOND SERVE
Federer – 77/62
Krajinovic – 58/20

TOTAL POINTS
Federer – 89
Krajinovic – 56

Novak Djokovic revealed he offered Filip Krajinovic some advice ahead of his Serbian countryman's Australian Open clash with Roger Federer.

Federer and Krajinovic will do battle on Rod Laver Arena on Wednesday, while Djokovic eased into the third round earlier in the day.

Djokovic said he had spoken to Krajinovic, 27, ahead of the second-round clash with the Swiss great.

"We spoke last night. I thought he fought well to win his opening-round match. He was very close to losing that match. He won in five sets. That was great for his confidence," he told a news conference after beating Tatsuma Ito 6-1 6-4 6-2.

"Obviously today is a completely different match-up against Roger. We did speak a little bit about things that he can do to be, I guess, his best self on the court. Again, it doesn't depend only on him.

"It depends how well Roger starts and how well Roger plays. It can be a very interesting match-up. I think Krajinovic is a very talented player and has been around the Tour for a while, knows Roger's game.

"It just depends on how it starts. It can be a long one. It can be a short one. It's going to be interesting to see."

Djokovic continued his fine start to 2020, winning an eighth straight singles match and setting up a clash with Yoshihito Nishioka.

The 16-time grand slam champion was particularly pleased with his serve after sending down 16 aces and not facing a break point against Ito.

"My serve was working extremely well in first round and second round. That's something I worked on in the off-season," Djokovic said.

"That's one of the priorities I guess of the training sessions, trying to get that I think advantage of winning a lot of easy points on the first serve.

"It has been paying off so far I think in the ATP Cup and here with the two matches."

Roger Federer's bid to win a record-equalling seventh Australian Open crown continues against Filip Krajinovic in the second round on Wednesday.

Federer trails Novak Djokovic's record haul of seven titles at Melbourne Park following last year's shock fourth-round exit.

The most successful men's player in history, 20-time grand slam champion Federer has not added to his major tally in two years.

However, the 38-year-old once again looms as a threat and we take a closer look at where the third seed is at ahead of a midweek encounter in Melbourne.

 

Form and results

Federer did not play a lead-up tournament but there were no signs of rust from the Swiss sensation in the opening round. The veteran produced a polished display against Steve Johnson, hitting 34 winners and 20 unforced errors on Monday.

R1: bt Johnson 6-3 6-2 6-2

Next up

Krajinovic awaits Federer after a gruelling opening to his campaign at Melbourne Park on Tuesday. The 27-year-old Serbian was on court for almost four hours as he outlasted Quentin Halys 7-6 (9-7) 7-6 (7-1) 3-6 4-6 7-5 on Court 22. He will not have much time to recover, with a daunting midweek showdown with an all-time great.

Draw

If, as expected, Federer sees off Krajinovic under the Rod Laver Arena lights, a third-round meeting with either John Millman or 31st seed Hubert Hurkacz is next. A clash with Grigor Dimitrov in the fourth round could also be on the horizon.

What he said

"When you win it's all good. Or even when you make a semis and beyond, you know you're in good shape, plus you're just coming off the off-season so you have the confidence. You have practice, you know, flowing through your body, too. The problem is sometimes when you play too many matches and you don't have that practice block, in a way you're just playing to win, just trying to weasel your way to the next victory and you forget how to properly play tennis. So I think the Australian Open, it's nice if you play well, but there is no drama as if it doesn't go well for the rest of the season. It's worse if later in the season success is not there and you're missing that block of practice and you can't rely on it anymore because it's too far back."

Jeremy Chardy beat Gregoire Barrere in three sets on Monday to set up a meeting with top seed Stan Wawrinka in the second round of the Qatar Open.

Chardy saved six set points before being taken do a decider by Barrere, who passed up six chances to break his opponent and succumbed to a 6-3 3-6 6-3 defeat.

Seventh seed Adrian Mannarino exited after a 6-3 6-4 loss to Alexander Bublik, while Filip Krajinovic – seeded sixth – came from a set down to beat Kyle Edmund 4-6 6-3 6-3.

There were also wins for Fernando Verdasco, Aljaz Bedene, Corentin Moutet and Miomir Kecmanovic.

Stefanos Tsitsipas battled past Filip Krajinovic to set up a semi-final with favourite Roger Federer in the Swiss Indoors Basel.

Tsitsipas is already assured of his place in the ATP Finals in London and he will now be aiming to claim the scalp of former world number one Federer, who received a walkover due to Stan Wawrinka's withdrawal, ahead of next week's Paris Masters.

Krajinovic was no pushover for the Greek, however, with Tsitsipas initially falling behind before recovering to win 3-6 6-4 6-4.

Despite Tsitsipas cruising through the second set to restore parity, matters looked set to be complicated for the world number seven when he conceded a break early in the decider.

But Krajinovic was unable to capitalise – Tsitsipas holding his nerve and cracking his opponent's serve once more before wrapping up the win with the first match point on offer.

Meanwhile, Reilly Opelka ended a run of three successive defeats against top-10 opponents as he defeated Roberto Bautista Agut 6-3 3-6 6-3.

The 22-year-old American lost to world number 10 Agut at the Shanghai Masters, but inflicted revenge on Friday, inflicting a blow to the Spaniard's ATP Finals hopes.

With Matteo Berrettini having progressed to the last four in Vienna, Agut is now 130 points adrift of the Italian in the Race to London rankings.

Opelka will go up against Alex de Minaur – a Next Gen ATP Finals qualifier – in the semi-finals, after the Australian overcame Jan-Lennard Struff 6-4 7-6 (7-4) in Friday's other match.

Stan Wawrinka has been forced to pull out of a dream home quarter-final against Roger Federer at the Swiss Indoors Basel due to a back injury.

The seventh seed Wawrinka displayed plenty of grit to dispatch of Frances Tiafoe 6-3 3-6 7-5 on Thursday and was set to meet Swiss great Federer in the last eight.

However, Wawrinka – a losing finalist to Andy Murray at last week's European Open – will not be able to take to the court to face Federer for a 27th time.

"The bad news is that I will have to retire," he said.

"I had some trouble with my back in the last game. I'm sure I cannot make it for tomorrow [Friday]. I will pull out."

Third seed Stefanos Tsitsipas had to fight back to avoid an upset against Ricardas Berankis, the Greek recovering to seal a 6-7 (4-7) 6-2 6-4 triumph. 

Filip Krajinovic is up next after he upset fifth seed Fabio Fognini 6-2 6-4, while Roberto Bautista Agut needed three sets to defeat Richard Gasquet.

Reilly Opelka will take on the Spanish fourth seed after he recovered from a set down to defeat David Goffin 6-7 (4-7) 7-6 (7-4) 7-5.

 

Karen Khachanov thrilled the Moscow crowd as he saved five match points before overcoming veteran Philipp Kohlschreiber at the Kremlin Cup.

The world number eight, top seed and defending champion at the ATP 250 event, found himself 5-3 down in the decider but refused to buckle as Kohlschreiber eyed a notable scalp on his 36th birthday.

Khachanov – now the focus of home hopes after Daniil Medvedev's withdrawal due to fatigue - repelled three match points to force a tie-break and his calmness from the baseline saw him through more trouble to prevail 3-6 6-3 7-6 (9-7).

Andreas Seppi is up next for Khachanov after the experienced Italian similarly came from a set down to beat Roberto Carballes Baena 5-7 6-1 6-3.

Serbian fourth seed Dusan Lajovic also went the distance against Lukas Rosol, coming through 6-4 6-7 (8-6) 6-3 to beat his Czech opponent and set up a quarter-final clash against last year's runner-up Adrian Mannarino – a straight-sets winner over Mikhail Kukushkin.

Stan Wawrinka returned to action at the European Open, competing for the first time since his US Open quarter-final loss, and his troublesome knee was given a thorough workout by Feliciano Lopez.

The two seasoned campaigners provided plenty of entertainment - a sumptuous backhand half-volley at the net in the first set serving as a particular highlight from Wawrinka, who came through 6-7 (4-7) 6-4 7-6 (7-4).

The 34-year-old Swiss will take on Gilles Simon in the quarter-finals after the world number 47 came through his all-French clash against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 6-4 7-5.

Andy Murray will face Pablo Cuevas in round two after the eighth-seeded Uruguayan beat Hugo Dellien 6-4 6-3, while Guido Pella ensured further South American success by beating Kwon Soon-woo 7-5 7-5 to earn a quarter-final place.

Frances Tiafoe's reward for breaking a three-match losing streak, defeating Yannick Maden, will be a meeting with another German opponent in Jan-Lennard Struff.

At the Stockholm Open, US Open semi-finalist and second seed Grigor Dimitrov was dumped out by Sam Querrey, losing 6-7 (7-9) 6-3 7-6 (7-3). Taylor Fritz was another seed to fall – 7-5 6-4 against Yoshihito Nishioka,

Filip Krajinovic is up next for Nishioka after beating Dan Evans 7-5 2-6 6-3.

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