For immediate release
Thursday June 25th 2015
FINAL FOUR SET FOR BATTLE AT AEGON OPEN NOTTINGHAM SEMI-FINALS
Sell-out crowds at the Aegon Open Nottingham saw American Sam Querrey set up a semi-final meeting with Alexandr Dolgopolov after toppling second seed Gilles Simon, while Marcos Baghdatis and Denis Istomin also advanced to the last four.
In an encounter that lasted more than two hours, twelfth seed Querrey battled back from a set down and saved two match points on the way to overcoming the Frenchman 5-7, 7-6(8), 6-4.
Friday’s semi-final action in front of another capacity crowd at the Nottingham Tennis Centre will start with a showdown between 2014 Aegon Trophy Nottingham champion Baghdatis and Istomin.
Cypriot, Baghdatis, got past Simone Bolelli 6-4, 6-4 while Istomin went the distance against fourth seed Leonardo Mayer 6-3, 6-7(8), 7-6(6).
World No. 44 Querrey was pleased to move within a win of the final in the East Midlands, having beaten Simon for the first time in his career on the ATP World Tour. Querrey said: “The first set was a little slow. I was serving well, which kept me in it. It wasn’t until the middle of the second set that I started feeling good and got my confidence. There’s no better way to go into a major than winning a tournament the week before. It would be a great confidence booster.”
Looking ahead to his semi-final against Dolgopolov, who beat Yen-Hsun Lu 6-4 4-6 7-6(4), Querrey added: “Dolgopolov has a strange game, he’s an awkward guy to play with the way he serves and hacks the slice around, he goes for the return.”
Former World No. 8 Baghdatis is hoping to continue his nine-match winning streak at the Nottingham Tennis Centre, and is yet to drop a set in this year’s competition. He said: “I served very well today, I started moving better on grass. I’m feeling my movement, which is very important, and I played the important points very well.” And, having held all of his service games throughout the tournament so far, the 2006 Australian Open finalist believes he is finding his rhythm. “That’s a good statistic. I’ve been serving well throughout the tournament, my percentage is very high and I’m getting a lot of free points.”
Istomin saved a match point in the deciding set tie-break against Mayer, which went to 6-6 before the Uzbek won two points in a row. “It was a big fight. Mentally, you have to be strong. Every ball can jump anywhere if it’s close to the baseline, so you have to prepare for it,” said Istomin.
The World No. 92 faces a quick turnaround before he begins proceedings on Centre Court on Friday against Baghdatis, against whom he has a 1-2 win-loss record. Istomin said: “He’s a great player, we’ve played a couple of times. He returns well so it will be more difficult for me to serve, but I’ll try to do my best and fight for each ball.”
On another sold-out day, Friday will also see British interests represented in the doubles competition as Scotland’s Colin Fleming and American partner Eric Butorac will face Chris Guccione of Australia and Brazilian Andre Sa last on Centre Court for a place in Saturday’s final against second seeds Pablo Cuevas and David Marrero.
The last remaining hospitality packages are still available for the remaining two days of the tournament. For information on the hospitality packages on offer at The Aegon Open Nottingham head to http://www.lta.org.uk/major-events/aegon-open-nottingham/nottingham-hospitality/ or contact Elliot Sheasby on email@example.com / 0121 233 6500 / 07816 924 129