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Fourth seed Fabio Fognini strikes a forehand during his 43rd match win of the season - a career-best tally - on Friday at the China Open.

Fognini Earns Career-Best 43rd Win Of Season, Reaches Beijing SFs

Italian wins 43rd match of the year

Fabio Fognini experienced few problems on Friday in reaching the China Open semi-finals for the second time (also 2015). The fourth-seeded Italian, playing some of the best tennis of his career in 2018, overcame Marton Fucsovics of Hungary 6-4, 6-4 in one hour and 39 minutes.

The victory gave 31-year-old Fognini his 43rd match win of the year (43-19), bettering his previous-best tally of 42-27 in 2013. So far this season, he has lifted three ATP World Tour trophies — at the Brasil Open in Sao Paulo (d. Jarry), the SkiStar Swedish Open (d. Gasquet) and at the Abierto de Tenis Mifel presentado por Cinemex in Los Cabos (d. Del Potro) — from four final (also runner-up at last week’s Shenzhen Open, losing to Bernard Tomic).

Fognini withstood three break point against Fucsovics in his first service game and broke for a 3-2 advantage in the 47-minute first set. Fognini opened up a 5-2 lead in the second set, but could not convert two match point chances and was broken.

Fognini will continue his quest to become the first Italian man to clinch four singles trophies in a single season against top-seeded Argentina Juan Martin del Potro, who earned a spot at the Nitto ATP Finals in November on Wednesday. Del Potro swept past Filip Krajinovic of Serbia in the second quarter-final of the day.

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Elsewhere, fifth-seeded Briton Kyle Edmund defeated qualifier Dusan Lajovic of Serbia 6-3, 7-6(4) in one hour and 33 minutes for a place in the semi-final of an ATP World Tour 500 tournament for the second time (also 2017 Erste Bank Open 500 in Vienna). He now challenges Georgian Nikoloz Basilashvili, who beat Malek Jaziri of Tunisia 6-2, 6-2.

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