The semifinals line-up was completed on Day Five of the ABN Amro World Tennis Tournament, with Nicolas Mahut taking a place in both draws and Martin Klizan saving five match points to defeat Roberto Bautisa Agut for the first time.
Kohlschreiber Reaches The Rotterdam Semifinals For The First Time
Philipp Kohlschreiber recovered from a set deficit to defeat second seed Marin Cilic 3-6, 6-3, 6-4. The head-to-head record, 5-3 in favour of the German, pointed towards a tight battle, and their ninth meeting did not dissapoint.
From the word go, Kohlschreiber took it to Cilic but could not convert any of his three break points in the opening game. He squandered another break point a few games later, and it came back to haunt him as Cilic took the opener 6-3 after breaking on his first opportunity.
The second set lacked any break points, with both players serving at sixty percent or over. Cilic did have a chance to grab a vital break, but was only broken himself in the following game to take the match into an expected third set. The 32nd ranked German gained the early advantage by breaking at the third time of asking in the opening game, going on to waste another chance of an insurance break. In the end only the one break in the decider was necessary, as Kohlschreiber reached the Rotterdam last four for the first time.
Klizan Saves Five Match Points To Defeat Bautista Agut For The First Time
Martin Klizan saved five match points across two consecutive service games to record his first ever win over Roberto Bautista Agut after four previous meetings.
The match started as their following meetings ended, with Bautista Agut coming out the faster of the two, to break at the first opportunity to take an early 3-0 lead. The break was handed back in the next service game as the set headed into a tie-breaker. Bautista Agut had wasted a set point in the final game before the breaker, but seized upon his third chance to win the opener 7-6(5).
Bautista Agut had a foot in yet another semifinal of 2016 with a break in the opening game of the second set, and had a chance to serve for a place in the last four after missing two match points in the previous return game. Then followed the game of the match, and one which shaped the overall complexion of their encounter. The Spaniard reached 40-15 on his own serve but lost the resulting two points to give Klizan some hope. Another match point followed, but he couldn’t quite get over the line and was broken after saving three break points. In the following game, he had a break point to give himself a second opportunity to serve the match out, but Klizan held to take the pair into another tiebreaker. Yet again the tiebreak was a tight affair, leading to the Slovakian Klizan taking the match into a decider on his second set point.
Bautista Agut had played alot of tennis during the start of 2016, with titles already in Auckland and Sofia, but this showed in the decider as Klizan delivered his second bagel of the year to reach the semifinals with a 6-7(5), 7-6(6), 6-0 win.
Other Day Five Action
Nicolas Mahut found his way into the Rotterdam singles semifinals for the first time after surprisingly breezing past Viktor Troicki 6-2, 6-1. The Frenchman is also in the doubles semifinals, with partner Vasek Pospisil. Gael Monfils completed the semifinal line-up, after putting out day four star man Alexander Zverev 7-6(4), 6-3.
Elsewhere the doubles semifinals were also finalised, as Jean-Julien Rojer and Horia Tecau comfortably saw-off the unseeded duo of Gilles Muller and Nenad Zimonjic 6-3, 6-3. Their opponents in the semifinal will be Philipp Petzschner and Alexander Peya, who won against Dominic Inglot and Robert Lindstedt 6-3, 4-6, 10-4.
Day Six Preview
It's semifinals day on day six in Rotterdam, with Mahut aiming to win another two matches in a day after achieving the feat on Day Four. He clashes with Klizan in the first match of the day, before taking on Henri Kontinen and John Peers alongside Vasek Pospisil.
The evening session starts with Monfils meeting Kohlschreiber before the other doubles semifinal between top seeds Rojer and Tecau against Petzschner and Peya.
Day Six Order Of Play
Centre Court – 2:00pm
Nicolas Mahut – Martin Klizan
Nicolas Mahut / Vasek Pospisil – Henri Kontinen / John Peers
NOT BEFORE 7:30pm
(5) Gael Monfils - Philipp Kohlschreiber
(1) Jean-Julien Rojer / Horia Tecau– Philipp Petzschner / Alexander Peya