Fourth-seeded Kevin Anderson and sixth-seeded Adrian Mannarino set up a semi-final showdown between the last two seeded players at the SA Open as they both cruised through to the last four in straight sets on Friday.
Home favorite Anderson dropped just four games in a one-sided 6-3, 6-1 win over Slovakia’s Karol Beck in less than an hour. Anderson mixed powerful serves with clever drop shots and led 10-3 on winners for a place in the last four and was due to play Mannarino of France, who was too strong for Canada’s Frank Dancevic, going through 6-3, 6-2 in just 54 minutes.
Dancevic beat top-seed Feliciano Lopez in the first round, but Mannarino broke three times and powered past his opponent.
India’s Somdev Devvarman and South African wild card Izak van der Merwe complete the semi-final lineup.
Van der Merwe and Anderson are the first home players to reach the semis of the SA Open since its return to the tour in 2009.
The unseeded Devvarman improved his record to 3-0 over Rik de Voest, another South African wild card entrant, with a comeback 3-6, 7-6 (5), 6-1 win for a place in his second ATP semi.
Devvarman was 4-1 up in the second set but let it slip, and was two points away from defeat in the tiebreak before wrestling back the momentum.
He took the breaker 7-5, then broke twice straight away and raced through the deciding set for a place in the last four.
South Africa had three players in the last eight for the first time at an ATP event since 1996.
Van der Merwe broke Greul twice in the second set for another surprise win after upsetting last year’s runner-up Stephane Robert of France in the first round.