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By Chris Oddo | Friday October 20, 2017


It will be the upstarts against the seeds in the European Open semifinals. Surprising efforts from Stefanos Tsitsipas and Ruben Bemelmans were countered by steady ones from No.2-seeded Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and No.4-seeded Diego Schwartzman.

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Both Bemelmans and Tsitsipas have reached their first career ATP semifinals, though each is in a very different phase of his own career.

Bemelmans, 29, has claimed his first Top 20 win in Antwerp, and on Friday he backed up his win over No.3-seeded Nick Kyrgios with a 4-6, 7-6(2), 6-4 win over Joao Sousa.

Bemelmans will face Tsonga in the semis. The Frenchman knocked off his compatriot Julien Benneteau, 7-6(5), 6-2, behind 17 aces and 30 of 32 first-serve points won.

Tsonga is into his fifth semifinal of the season.


On the top half of the draw 19-year-old qualifier Tsitsipas notched his first career Top 10 win with a 2-6, 7-6(1), 7-6(4) victory over top-seeded Goffin. Tsitsipas, a former junior World No.1, won for the first time in nine tries at the tour-level at Shanghai when he upset Karen Khachanov after qualifying. This week in Antwerp he has knocked off No.6-seeded Pablo Cuevas, Ivo Karlovic (who retired in the second set while trailing 7-6(4), 5-6) and now Goffin.

The Greek, who is still in the running to reach the #NextGenATP Finals in Milan (currently 10th) will face No.4-seeded Diego Schwartzman in the semifinals. Schwartzman is having a fantastic year, playing at a career-high ranking of 26. He is into his third semifinal of the season (also Istanbul and Tokyo) and will be bidding for his first final of 2017 and his third career final. He was last year’s runner-up in Antwerp, falling to Richard Gasquet in the final.

 

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