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The penultimate day’s action at the Aegon Surbiton Trophy saw both the quarterfinals and semifinals of the men’s singles completed, as well as the women’s singles semifinals and the doubles finals.
The day got off to a dramatic start, (aside from glorious sunshine appearing for the 1st time this week!) Home favorite Dan Evans had to retire against Dustin Brown two games away from victory with a calf injury – you can find a full report here.
Elsewhere, Jordan Thompson would be Brown’s semi-final opponent following a convincing 7-5 6-2 win over Reilly Opelka. The other semi-final would be contested by Yuichi Suigita of Japan and big serving Marius Copil, who cam through against Sergiy Stakhovsky 7-5 6-4, whilst Sugita beat the experienced Dudi Sela 6-3, 7-5.
The men’s doubles title was won by the last-minute makeshift pairing of Marcus Daniell (NZL) and Aisam-Ul-Haq Quershi (PAK), who beat Treat Huey and American Denis Kudla 6-3, 7-6 (0).
The most memorable and astonishing moment of the match came in the second set tie-break, when Huey put a smash away but touched the net in his follow through. Despite the umpire not noticing, Huey conceded the point – a rare moment of pure sportsmanship at a critical moment of the match, a point not understated by both Daniell and Quershi afterwards.
“It’s very rare for someone to concede a point like that; it’s testament to the type of guy Treat is, said Daniell in his post-match interview.
The women’s doubles was won by the Australian pairing of Monique Adamczak and Storm Sanders, in only their second ever tournament together. They beat Kai-Chen Chang (TPE) and Marina Erakovic (NZL) 7-5, 6-4 on court 1.
Afterwards, the Aussies spoke of how appreciative they were of the tournament organisers for not moving any matches indoors to the National Tennis Centre at Roehampton when it may have been the easiest option during a week of stoppages for bad weather.
“A few times I thought we’d go indoors but the tournament organizers said we should just wait it out, and the courts have been really nice to play on” the pair said.
Back on Centre, there was a gulf in class between Brits Heather Watson and Harriet Dart, with Watson strolling through 6-1, 6-2.
Watson will play unseeded Slovak Magdalena Rybarikova in the final, who continued an impressive week by beating top seed Oceane Dodin of France 6-3, 6-2. Rybarkiova has not dropped a set all week on the grass.
The men’s final on Sunday will be contested by Jordan Thompson of Australia and Yuichi Sugita of Japan.
The sixth and seventh seeds respectively are of a similar age, ranking and are very similar in their style of play, with both enjoying the grass this week with neither player dropping a set thus far. Thompson played with intelligence against big-serving German Dustin Brown, winning 6-3, 7-5.
In a similar sort of match-up, young Japanese player Sugita looked equally impressive against Marius Copil of Romania, winning 7-5, 6-4.
Sunday sees the culmination of both the singles tournaments. With two very evenly matched finals in both the men’s and women’s finals, and a home player involved in Watson, it’s sure to be an entertaining end to a fantastic week of tennis at Surbiton.
Freelance journalist Kieran Jackson is covering the British grass court summer in the lead up to Wimbledon for Tennis Now.