Match Report

Musetti Seals SF Spot In Chengdu, Zverev Advances

Safiullin advances after Thompson retires
September 24, 2023
Chengdu Open
Lorenzo Musetti in action on Sunday in Chengdu. By ATP Staff

Is this the week Lorenzo Musetti captures his first trophy of the year?

The 21-year-old Italian advanced to his third tour-level semi-final of the season on Sunday when he moved past Frenchman Arthur Rinderknech 6-3, 6-3 at the Chengdu Open.

The second seed played with flair throughout the one-hour, 28-minute clash, striking 32 winners at the ATP 250 hard-court event. He timed the ball cleanly off both wings and hit an array of acute angles to outmanoeuvre Rinderknech.

"It was a step forward from yesterday," Musetti said. "Yesterday's match gave me a lot of confidence and today I started very well, breaking him immediately and that was the key to my win. A really solid performance from the baseline and I am really happy to be in the semi-finals."

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Musetti, who won two tour-level titles in 2022, will next meet Roman Safiullin. The World No. 55 advanced to his first semi-final of the season after Jordan Thompson was forced to retire after Safiullin had won the first set 7-6(1). Musetti's best results of the season were semi-final runs in Barcelona and Bastad.

Alexander Zverev also advanced, defeating Miomir Kecmanovic 5-7, 7-5, 6-2. The German is currently seventh in the Pepperstone ATP Live Race To Turin and will be aiming for a strong Asian Swing to boost his hopes of qualifying for the Nitto ATP Finals, an event he has won twice.

Zverev was pushed hard throughout the three-hour clash against Karatsev, but found his best level in the third set. He did not commit an unforced error to reach his seventh tour-level semi-final of the year.

The German will next play Grigor Dimitrov, who ousted Christopher O'Connell 6-4, 6-1. The Bulgarian has enjoyed a special week, earning his 400th tour-level victory in the second round. He is trying to secure his first title since the 2017 Nitto ATP Finals.

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