Felix Near-Perfect On Serve In Los Cabos QF Win
Felix Auger-Aliassime lost just one point on first serve Thursday night at the Abierto de Tenis Mifel as he fought off a stern challenge from Steve Johnson to reach the semi-finals in Los Cabos. In his 6-4, 7-6(3) victory, the Canadian was all but flawless on his first delivery, winning 33 of 34 points — a stellar 97 per cent.
"That's a pretty good stat," he said with a smile in his on-court interview. "I didn't know it was that good. I knew it was good, definitely better than yesterday.
"I know my serve can be a really good weapon for me, a really strong one. Today I showed it, not facing a break point. That stat, I don't know if I've done that before."
After starting the match with an immediate break, the second seed dropped just two points on serve in the opening set. While he threatened with seven break points in the second set, Johnson held firm to force a tie-break, saving one of those break chances with a drop volley that was equal parts devilish and daring.
The tie-break remained on serve until two untimely forehand errors from Johnson brought up match point. Auger-Aliassime's 17th ace sealed his progress to his 18th tour-level semi-final final and fourth of the season.
"The crowd was really nice today. It's better not to play a Mexican here, so that was also nicer for me," he added post-match, referencing his opening win against home favourite Alex Hernandez on Wednesday.
Making his Los Cabos debut, Auger-Aliassime is seeking his second title of the season after he claimed his first career ATP Tour crown in February in Rotterdam. He will next face third seed and defending champion Cameron Norrie, after the Briton was a 6-3, 7-6(4) winner against Radu Albot. The Canadian has a never lost against Norrie, boasting a 4-0 ATP Head2Head record against the Briton.