Hurkacz, Bublik Save MPs To Triumph In Marseille QF Thrillers

Pair to meet in semi-finals at indoor ATP 250 event

Hubert Hurkacz and Alexander Bublik both came back from the brink Friday to reach the semi-finals at the Open 13 Provence after an afternoon of dramatic quarter-final action in Marseille.

The top-seeded Hurkacz saved a Mikael Ymer match point at 5/6 in the deciding-set tie-break en route to a hard-earned 6-3, 3-6, 7-6(6) victory at the indoor ATP 250 in southern France. The Pole, who saved six of nine break points he faced in his two-hour, 50-minute win, reeled off three points in a row to prevail and reach his maiden Marseille semi-final on his third appearance at the event.

“I’m just really happy with the victory today,” said Hurkacz post-match. “Mikael is a beautiful player, an amazing competitor and it could have gone either way. Those matches mean a lot if you’re able to come through them. I’m just really pumped and happy to be in the semi-finals.”

The World No. 11 Hurkacz is now 8-4 for the 2023 season. The Pole is this week chasing his sixth ATP Tour title, and his first since his triumph on the grass in Halle last June.

Hurkacz’s semi-final opponent, Alexander Bublik, also rallied to victory in a deciding-set tie-break on Friday. The Kazakhstani trailed fourth seed Grigor Dimitrov 4/6 but prevailed 7-5, 3-6, 7-6(6) to reach the semi-finals in Marseille for the second time.

Both Bublik and Dimitrov converted two of three break points as a tight quarter-final contest went the distance. It was the 25-year-old Bublik who came good late on, however, as he reached his first tour-level semi-final since Metz last September in dramatic fashion.

Bublik had not won an ATP Tour match in 2023 prior to this week, but the World No. 50 has defeated Filip Krajinovic, Gregoire Barrere and now Dimitrov in France to kick-start his season. However, he will have to snap a four-match losing streak in his ATP Head2Head series against Hurkacz in Saturday’s semi-finals should he wish to proceed further in Marseille.