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Felix Auger-Aliassime charged past Radu Albot 6-3, 6-0 on Friday to advance to his fourth ATP Tour semi-final of 2020 at the bett1HULKS Indoors in Cologne.

After dropping serve in the opening game of the match, the #NextGenATP Canadian won 12 of the next 14 games to race to his 20th ATP Tour win of the season (20-14) in 71 minutes. Auger-Aliassime has enjoyed a strong run of results at indoor hard-court events this year, with final appearances at the ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament in Rotterdam and the Open 13 Provence in Marseille.

“Today I had a tougher start than yesterday,” said Auger-Aliassime, in an on-court interview. “I didn’t start well as I had a blister on my foot, but afterwards everything was good in my game.

“I needed to get into the match. I played better and better, putting pressure on him with my serve. I was going for my shots, even if I was missing a bit at the start. I kept dictating, returned well and got lucky hitting the lines a few times. I saw some openings at the end.”

Auger-Aliassime, who converted five of six break points against Albot, will next face second seed Roberto Bautista Agut. The 20-year-old lost his only previous match against the Spaniard at the 2019 Davis Cup Finals.

“Playing [Roberto] will obviously be a great match, a great battle and [an opportunity for] me to try and get revenge for a heart-breaking loss last year in Davis Cup.”

Bautista Agut booked his place in the semi-finals with a 7-6(4), 5-7, 6-0 win against Hubert Hurkacz. The World No. 13 matched Auger-Aliassime’s mark of 20 wins this year after two hours and 29 minutes, saving 11 of 13 break points en route to victory.

“It was really tough today. He was going for his shots. I had a lot of chances to win the second set, but unfortunately I had to go to the third,” said Bautista Agut.

“I wanted to start with a lot of intensity, [being] very aggressive and I think I did very well at the beginning of the third set and I won the match.”


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