Del Potro faces Ferrer in Auckland semifinal

Yolanda Curtis
January 14, 2018

Del Potro and Ferrer's rallies were generally shorter as they slugged it out from the baseline.

The 29-year-old second seed, who won the Auckland tournament the last time he played in it in 2009, will now return to the top 10 in the ATP rankings on Monday for the first time since August 2014 after struggling with injuries over the past few years. Del Potro clearly overpowered the 18-year-old firing eight aces.

Roberto Bautista Agut let out a guttural roar immediately after lobbing his way to an ASB Classic semi-final win over Robin Haase.

The two tour veterans last played in 2016, when del Potro knocked Ferrer out of the US Open in straight sets, and previously at Wimbledon in 2013.

Ferrer said he expected a tough match from world No.12 del Potro, who breezed past prodigious duo Denis Shapovalov and Karen Khachanov.

"I have to play very aggressive to find his backhand - he has a very good serve and wonderful forehand, and (if) he takes the initiative, I won't have a chance".

But with all three sets going to a tiebreak, Bautista Agut's relentless accuracy and fitness came to the fore, helping him win in just under three hours.

"It was a great finish and when I saw that last ball in I went insane", Bautista Agut said.

"I tried to play consistent and aggressive because with Chung, he plays with power, and it's never easy", Ferrer said in a court-side interview.

"I knew he would fight until the end".

A potential final against Juan Martin del Potro awaits.

Juan Martin broke in the very first game of the match when he forced an error from Spaniard, and he moved 2-0 ahead when he saved a break point in the following game.

"I'll be OK for tomorrow, I have enough time to recover now - in the final, no pain matters, so I'll have to be focused on the game".

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