Gaston Saves 4 MPs, Stuns Garin For First ATP SF ​

Top seed Ruud also advances

Frenchman Hugo Gaston saved four match points on Friday at the Swiss Open Gstaad to upset fourth-seeded Chilean Cristian Garin 6-4, 1-6, 7-6(11) to reach his first ATP Tour semi-final.

The 20-year-old twice fought back from a break down in the final set before he saved four match points at 5/6, 7/8, 9/10, and 10/11 in a mammoth tie-break to advance in two hours and 20 minutes. He has now claimed 17 clay-court wins at all levels this season, having reached ATP Challenger Tour finals at the Concord Iasi Open and the Roma Garden Open I.

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“I am very happy to be in my first [ATP Tour] semi-final,” Gaston said. “It was a great fight. It was a really long match. I always tried to play my game, and it is a good win for me. I hope I can continue like that.”

Gaston won 75 per cent (36/48) of his first-service points and used the drop shot to great effect throughout. The World No. 155, who was competing in his first tour-level quarter-final on Friday, becomes the youngest Gstaad semi-finalist since 2006, when a then 17-year-old Marin Cilic enjoyed a run to the last four.

He will next face seventh-seeded Serbian Laslo Djere after he battled past Frenchman Arthur Rinderknech 6-4, 6-7(5), 6-4 to advance to his third ATP Tour semi-final of the season.

The 26-year-old enjoyed a run to the semi-finals at the Hamburg European Open (l. to Krajinovic) last week and reached the championship match in Cagliari (l. to Sonego) in April. Djere saved all three break points he faced against Rinderknech before claiming the decisive break in the tenth game of the third set to move through in two hours and 39 minutes.

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Third-seeded Norwegian Capser Ruud also moved into the last four with a 6-2, 5-7, 6-3 victory over sixth seed Benoit Paire. The 22-year-old, who clinched his second ATP Tour title of the year at the Nordea Open (d. Coria) last week, hit 13 aces as he battled through in one hour and 50 minutes.

Ruud is currently in ninth place in the FedEx ATP Race To Turin and has now improved to 3-0 in his ATP Head2Head Series against Paire. He will compete in his 14th ATP Tour semi-final against Czech qualifier Vit Kopriva, who advanced to his first after a 6-1, 6-0 victory over Swede Mikael Ymer.

Featured Photo Credit: Christian Collet

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