ATP

Alcaraz advances to Barcelona semi-finals as Rune reaches last four in Munich

By Sports Desk April 21, 2023

Carlos Alcaraz kept his Barcelona Open title defence on track following a 7-6 (7-5) 6-4 victory over compatriot Alejandro Davidovich Fokina in the quarter-finals.

The world number two is aiming to become the first player to successfully defend the Barcelona crown since Rafael Nadal won three in a row between 2016 and 2018.

And though run close by Davidovich Fokina, the reigning champion has now reeled off six sets without reply, taking his overall record at the ATP 500 event to 8-1.

The Spaniard, who is now 9-1 against his fellow countrymen since the start of 2022, will play Dan Evans in the last four. The Briton came from behind to defeat 15th seed Francisco Cerundolo 2-6 7-5 6-3.

They are joined by Stefanos Tsitsipas, whose quest for a first title of the campaign continues after a commanding 6-4 6-2 victory over eighth seed Alex De Minaur.

The second seed, who was runner-up at this event in 2018 and 2021, sealed the deal in one hour and 21 minutes to claim his ninth successive win against the Australian.

His reward is a showdown with Lorenzo Musetti, who received a walkover into the last four following Jannik Sinner's withdrawal.

Over in Munich, reigning champion Holger Rune booked his semi-final place with a dominant 6-2 6-4 win over Cristian Garin.

The world number seven, who is now 7-0 in this event, will play Christopher O'Connell. After defeating Alexander Zverev earlier in the week, the Australian qualifier built on his momentum by seeing off Flavio Cobolli 7-6 (7-5) 4-6 6-3.

Second seed Taylor Fritz also advanced in straight sets with a 6-3 6-4 victory over former world number three Dominic Thiem, who overcame eighth seed Marc-Andrea Huesler earlier in the day.

Fritz's semi-final opponent will be Botic van de Zandschulp after the fourth seed saw off Marcos Giron 7-6 (7-5) 6-3.

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