© Ouarrak Abdessamiaa

Pablo Andujar reaches the Grand Prix Hassan II semi-finals after beating Alexey Vatutin on Saturday.

Former Champ Andujar Reaches SFs

Gasquet to face Edmund for a place in Sunday's final

ATP World Tour stars hoping to reach the Grand Prix Hassan II final started their double shift on Saturday in Marrekech after rain washed out Friday’s play.

Two-time champion Pablo Andujar needed three sets to advance to the semi-finals, ending the surprise run of Russian qualifier Alexey Vatutin 6-4, 5-7, 6-3 on Saturday.

The champion in 2011 (d. Starace) and 2012 (d. Ramos-Vinolas), reached his first ATP World Tour semi-final since Barcelona in 2015 (l. to Nishikori) after two hours and 47 minutes to improve his tournament record to 13-2. Vatutin was bidding to reach his first tour-level semi-final after securing his first two wins on tour to reach the quarter-finals.

Andujar will face Portugal’s Joao Sousa later in the day, after the 29-year-old overcame Nikoloz Gabashvili 6-2, 4-6, 6-1. Sousa defeated Top 10 stars Alexander Zverev and David Goffin last month in Indian Wells and Miami respectively.

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France’s Richard Gasquet booked his place in the final four, needing exactly two hours to extend his perfect FedEx ATP Head2Head record to 8-0 against countryman Gilles Simon 6-2, 7-6(4). The fourth seed edged a second-set tie-break to beat the 2008 champion, in a match featuring 12 breaks of serve, and book a semi-final meeting with Kyle Edmund. Gasquet is aiming to reach his second championship match of the season (Montpellier).

Edmund won his 10th match of the 2018 ATP World Tour season by overcoming, Malek Jaziri, the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships semi-finalist, 6-2, 6-1 in 51 minutes on Court Central.

The 23-year-old, dropped only three points behind his first serve and converted all four of his break point chances en route to the semi-finals, and now stands just one win away from his first ATP World Tour final. Edmund and Gasquet are tied at 1-1 in their FedExATP Head2Head series.

Did You Know?
Pablo Andujar is one of just two men to win multiple titles at the Grand Prix Hassan II. Andujar won back-to-back titles in 2011 and 2012, with Guillermo Perez-Roldan the only other two-time winner (1992- ’93).

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