Veteran Ferrer marches to Auckland semis

Veteran Ferrer marches to Auckland semis

Clear your Friday night schedule.

In the clash of the former Auckland winners, Juan Martin del Potro defeated David Ferrer by 6-4 6-4 in an hour and 45 minutes, advancing to his 30th ATP final.

Both revered players of the men's game have found an early groove in 2018.

At the post-match press conference, Del Potro admitted his body was feeling the effects of being run around the court by Ferrer.

The same, however, can not be said for Jack Sock.

The experienced pair chartered similar paths this week, both showing their experience and poise to surge through clutch moments.

The 35-year-old Ferrer, in his 13th appearance at the tournament, did not rule out a return in 2019.

Spain's Ferrer , a four-time Auckland champion, disposed of the young Korean 6-3, 6-2 in their quarter final to set up a showdown with Juan Martin del Potro in the final four.

But that was as much to do with his opponent than any poor play from Del Potro.

"Now we are in a different moment".

He broke Del Potro for the first time this week in the first set and looked to have the momentum behind him for much of the second.

"If he takes the forehand he takes the initiative and I don't have a chance".

In two matches in Auckland, 2009 champion del Potro has yet to concede a break point.

"I tried to play consistent and aggressive because, with Chung, he plays with power, and it's never easy", Ferrer said afterwards on court.

With all three sets against Haase going to a tiebreak, Bautista Agut dropped the first but held his nerve in the next two to claim one of the most gruelling matches played at Stanley Street, (7) 6-7 7-6 (3) 7-6 (5).

"Of course I'm happy to get through".

"But I've been working hard to play this tennis and hopefully I can still improve in the next matches".

"I was surprised by the match today", said Del Potro, who had lost to Shapovalov in Montreal last August.

"He's a great champion of this sport and everybody enjoys watching his games so it doesn't matter, my ranking or his ranking, it'll be interesting to watch".

Mertens will play Mihaela Buzarnescu of Romania, who has reached her maiden WTA final.

On the other side of the draw, Ferrer's compatriot Roberto Bautista Agut appears a safe bet for the final, drawn for a semi against Dutchman Robin Haase.

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