Yesterday was quarterfinals day at the National Bank Challenger in Drummondville. At Tennis intérieur René-Verrier, Frank Dancevic, the last Canadian standing, consolidated his place among the final four. Crowned on March 22nd, the champion will take home $50 000 in prize money.
Seventh seed Dancevic overpowered Italian qualifier Matteo Donati in two identical sets (6-4, 6-4) and just 68 minutes to reach the semifinals. Despite his seven aces (versus three for Dancevic), Donati was broken once in each set. In his quest to take home his ninth career title and fourth in Québec, the 30-year-old Ontarian managed to save two break points. He has taken the top honours at the Granby National Bank Challenger three times: in 2003, 2006 and 2013. In his semifinal match, he will face Dimitar Kutrovsky of Bulgaria, who ousted Alex Kuznetsov of the US in two sets (6-4, 6-3).
In the top half of the draw, John-Patrick Smith of Australia fought his way into the semis with a three-set win over American Kevin King (7-6(6), 3-6, 6-3), who got the best of top seeded Slovak Lukas Lacko in the earlier round. Smith will face Germain Gigounon of Belgium for a place in the final. In the quarters, the Belgian showed Jarmere Jenkins the door in just over two hours (7-6(5), 3-6, 7-5).
In the doubles event, two Canadians will be duking it out for the crown. In the semis, Dancevic and Frank Moser of Germany defeated second seeds Kevin King and Dean O’Brien of South Africa in two sets (7-5. 7-5), and Philip Bester of Vancouver and Chris Guccione of Australia ousted Edward Corrie of Great Britain and Alex Kuznetsov of the US in three (7-5, 4-6, 10-6).
The semifinals get underway today at noon. The doubles final will follow.