Sat, Jan 13, 2018 - Page 16 News List

Chan and Hlavackova fall in final

By Dave Carroll  /  Staff reporter, with AP, SYDNEY

Del Potro, who sealed the Auckland title in 2009, shined in the key moments and fought off six of the seven break points Ferrer forged in a tense clash, with two games in the second set lasting almost 10 minutes apiece.

However, the Argentine’s massive forehand was the major defining factor in the match as he worked himself into a position to drive winner after winner past the Spaniard and clinched the semi-final in 1 hour, 46 minutes.

Del Potro is on Monday next week to enter the top 10 for the first time since August 2010 ahead of his Australian Open first-round clash against American teenager Frances Tiafoe.

Earlier, fifth seed Bautista Agut outlasted Dutchman Robin Haase in an epic clash that took almost three hours before the Spaniard produced an audacious backhand lob that kissed the baseline to clinch the 6-7 (7/9), 7-6 (7/3), 7-6 (7/5) win.

“The end was unbelievable,” Bautista Agut said. “When I saw the ball was in, I went crazy.”

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