Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (4E Sports) – World No. 77 Joao Sousa recorded the biggest win of his career, ousting No. 4 and top seed David Ferrer, 6-2, 7-6(6), Friday in the quarterfinal of the Malaysian Open.
Sousa was denied a match point opportunity when he served for victory at 5-4 in the second set, before rallying from a 4-6 deficit in the tie-break to prevail in one hour and 38 minutes.
“David is a good player,” said Sousa. “He probably didn’t play his best today, but tennis is like this. Sometimes you have great days, sometimes you don’t. I think I played a great match and I’m really happy to be in the semi-finals here.”
The 24-year-old Sousa, who jumped to a career-high No. 77 in the rankings after reaching his first ATP World Tour semifinal in St. Petersburg last week, will play fourth seed Jurgen Melzer for a place in the final.
Melzer reached his third ATP World Tour semifinal of the season after beating Federico Delbonis, 6-3, 6-2. The Austrian broke serve three times as he clinched victory in 79 minutes.
Fifth seed Julien Benneteau won an all-French clash with Adrian Mannarino, 6-3, 6-3, to reach the semifinals.
For a place in the final, Benneteau will challenge Stanislas Wawrinka, who edged sixth seed Dmitry Tursunov, 2-6, 6-3, 7-6(3) in just over two hours.
At the Thailand Open, top seed Tomas Berdych hit 20 aces and broke serve twice to beat Yen-Hsun Lu, 7-6(7), 6-4, in the quarterfinal.
In the semifinal, Berdych will face Gilles Simon, who dismissed Igor Sijsling, 6-4, 5-7, 6-4.
Defending champion Richard Gasquet also reached the semifinal after beating Mikhail Youzhny, 5-7, 6-3, 6-1, in just under two hours.
In the semifinal, Gasquet will play Milos Raonic., who hit 19 aces en route to a 6-4, 6-3 win over sixth-seed Spaniard Feliciano Lopez.
On the women’s side, seventh seed Petra Kvitova advanced to the final of the Toray Pan Pacific Open with a 3-6, 6-3, 7-6(2) win over former No. 1 Venus Williams.
Fifth seed Angelique Kerber followed Kvitova into the final with a 6-4, 7-6(5) win over fourth seed Caroline Wozniacki.