Wildcard Monfils claims last semifinals spot
In the match of the tournament so far, Haas raced away to take the first set 6-3 before the Frenchman fired up in the second to grab it 7-5. The third set went with serve until the eighth game when Monfils broke Haas’ serve. He then held his own serve in the next game to claim the set and the two-hour match 6-3.
Monfils said his first serve helped him a lot tonight but he will need to be more aggressive against Ferrer tomorrow.
“I am happy because it’s been a while since I won two matches in a row but I’m still not 100 per cent happy with the way I played. There was too much defence.”
Returning from a knee injury that saw the former world no. 7 drop to a ranking of 77, Monfils will need to see how the body recovers overnight.
“Tomorrow is a massive challenge. It will be very hard because I don’t know how I will wake up tomorrow – if I will be tired, have sore legs or my lower back could be a bit painful. I will take it how it goes.”
Tomorrow’s first semifinal will see the tournament’s second and fourth seeds – Philipp Kohlschreiber and Sam Querrey – meet in the battle to see who can claim their second finals berth in Auckland.
Kohlschreiber, who earlier today had a comfortable 7-6 6-4 win over Belgium’s Xavier Malisse, won the title in 2008 while a year later Querrey lost to Juan Martin Del Potro in the Auckland final. In the second match on centre court today Querrey pulled out the big serve and forehand to topple qualifier Jesse Levine 6-4 7-6.