|Posted on September 23, 2016 at 1:00 PM|
Tomas Berdych returns the ball to Paolo Lorenzi of Italy during the St. Petersburg Open ATP tennis tournament quarter-final match in St. Petersburg, Russia, on Friday, September 23, 2016. Berdych won 6-4, 6-3 in 78 minutes.
Berdych Fires Into St. Petersburg SFs
ATP Staff | Friday, September 23, 2016
Tomas Berdych was solid on serve on Friday at the St. Petersburg Open to reach his fourth tour-level semi-final of the year. The Barclays ATP World Tour Finals contender, who is currently No. 9 in the Emirates ATP Race To London, struck six aces and lost only four of his first service points to dismantle Paolo Lorenzi 6-4, 6-3 in 78 minutes.
"I felt good," Berdych said. "I am trying to improve day by day, trying to find my rhythm. My goals is to play as many matches as possible."
Berdych will next face fifth seed and #NextGen star Alexander Zverev, who downed 2004 champion Mikhail Youzhny. Berdych is looking for his first final of the year, having lost to eventual champion Andy Murray at Wimbledon in his most recent semi-final appearance.
"I think he is a rising ATP star," said Berdych of Zverev. "I have already played against him a couple of times. We had a couple of good battles at the beginning of this year. One of them was the Davis Cup rubber which I won in five sets. I beat him again at Wimbledon this year. He is definitely a guy with a great future. He always makes me work hard on the court to beat him."
Zverev cruised to a 6-2, 6-2 win against hometown favourite Youzhny to earn his third win in as many FedEx ATP Head2Head meetings against the Russian. The towering German fired eight aces and only dropped three points when landing a first serve. His week in St. Petersburg has been a homecoming of sorts, as both his parents hail from the Soviet Union. The 2015 Emirates Star Of Tomorrow winner is chasing his third ATP World Tour final, having finished runner-up in Halle and Nice this year