Sinner Continues Turin Pursuit In Antwerp

Italian next faces Harris

With the FedEx ATP Race To Turin heating up, top seed Jannik Sinner continued his bid to qualify for the Nitto ATP Finals on Friday at the European Open, overcoming Frenchman Arthur Rinderknech 6-4, 6-2 to reach his sixth tour-level semi-final of the season.

The Italian, who downed countryman Lorenzo Musetti in his opening match in Antwerp, is 11th (2,685 points) in the FedEx ATP Race To Turin, 270 points behind ninth-placed Hubert Hurkacz (2,955).

The Pole currently occupies the final qualification spot with eighth-placed Rafael Nadal out for the rest of the season. Briton Cameron Norrie sits one spot ahead of Sinner in 10th (2,795) after he won his maiden ATP Masters 1000 title in Indian Wells last week.

“I think I was very solid today,” Sinner said in his on-court interview. “I played against him in Lyon and he is a very great player and he wants to hit the ball hard. I tried to stay solid and play deep, so I am very happy with the performance today.”

The 20-year-old is aiming to make his debut at the season finale, to be held at the Pala Alpitour in Turin from 14-21 November. In an entertaining match against Rinderknech, Sinner saved two break points when serving for the first set at 5-4 as he struck his flat groundstrokes with consistent depth, dictating on his backhand throughout to advance after 79 minutes.

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Sinner has enjoyed a breakthrough season, winning three tour-level titles in Melbourne, Washington and Sofia. The World No. 13 also enjoyed a run to his first Masters 1000 final in Miami in April, becoming just the fourth teenager to reach the championship match in the tournament's 36-year history.

With his victory, Sinner has levelled his ATP Head2Head series with Rinderknech at 1-1, avenging his defeat to the World No. 65 in Lyon. The Italian will next face seventh seed Lloyd Harris in the last four after the South African moved past Marton Fucsovics 6-2, 7-5 in 85 minutes.

“I am happy to be in the semi-finals,” Sinner said. “He [Lloyd Harris] has had a great season and he is once again trying to find a way through. He serves well, he moves well. Today he played a wonderful match, so it is going to be very exciting.”

It is the second time Harris has reached a tour-level semi-final this season, after he advanced to the final in Dubai.

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