Andy Murray staved off five match points in the third set before notching a 6-0, 3-6, 7-6 (6) win over Jiri Lehecka of the Czech Republic to reach the championship match of the Qatar ExxonMobil Open on Friday in Doha.
Murray, a two-time Doha champion, had just 17 winners against 44 for Lehecka. The Brit will face third-seeded Daniil Medvedev in Saturday’s title match after the Russian defeated second-seeded Felix Auger-Aliassime in his semifinal match.
Murray committed just 16 unforced errors compared to Lehecka’s 27. The 35-year-old will be looking for his 47th career title but first since beating Switzerland’s Stan Wawrinka in the European Open in October 2019.
Medvedev had 18 winners and just eight unforced errors while improving to 6-0 all-time against Auger-Aliassime. The Canadian struck 30 winners but also had 26 unforced errors.
Open 13 Provence
French 18-year-old Arthur Fils is through to his second consecutive tournament semifinal after defeating three-time Grand Slam champion Stan Wawrinka 6-2, 6-3 in Marseille, France.
Fils, who got to the semis earlier this month at Montpellier, France, next will oppose countryman Benjamin Bonzi, who upset third-seeded Alex de Minaur of Australia 6-2, 6-4.
The other semifinal will feature top-seeded Hubert Hurkacz of Poland, who edged Sweden’s Mikael Ymer 6-3, 3-6, 7-6 (6), and Kazakhstan’s Alexander Bublik, who downed fourth-seeded Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria 7-5, 3-6, 7-6 (6). Hurkacz saved a match point in the third-set tiebreaker, while Bublik saved two match points in his decisive tiebreaker.
Top-seeded Carlos Alcaraz of Spain and second-seeded Cameron Norrie of Great Britain, who met in the final at Buenos Aires, Argentina, earlier last week, are both through to the semifinals in Rio de Janeiro.
Alcaraz topped Serbia’s Dusan Lajovic 6-4, 7-6 (0) in his quarterfinal to earn a matchup with Chilean qualifier Nicolas Jarry, who defeated sixth-seeded Sebastian Baez of Argentina 6-3, 7-6 (3).
Norrie came from behind to down Bolivia’s Hugo Dellien 4-6, 6-1, 6-4. His semifinal foe will be Bernabe Zapata Miralles, who got past seventh-seeded Albert Ramos-Vinolas 6-4, 2-6, 6-4 in an all-Spanish matchup.
–Field Level Media
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