BASTAD, July 21, 2018
The No. 3 seed and the tournament’s No. 4 will compete in the singles final of the SkiStar Swedish Open, when Richard Gasquet will take on Fabio Fognini in Bastad on Sunday.
Fognini battled past two-time runner-up Fernando Verdasco of Spain 6-1, 4-6, 7-5 in the semis. The World No. 15 from Italy outpointed his opponent 108-96 after two hours and 17 minutes.
“Beating Fernando is really difficult. He is a great champion,” said Fognini. “Today was a tough match, I started really well… and then after losing the first game of the second set, it was 40-0 on my serve, he was playing more confidently… At the end, I think it is a lottery.”
Gasquet was in command of his match against Henri Laaksonen of Switzerland, who appeared in his second tour-level semi-final after falling to David Goffin at the final-four stage of the 2017 Shenzhen Open. The 32-year-old Frenchman saved two of the three match points he faced, capitalizing on four of his own chances to advance in one hour and 12 minutes.
Both players are seeking their second title of the season. Gasquet won on grass in s’Hertogenbosch. Fognini triumphed indoors on clay in Sao Paulo. The pair will meet for the fourth time with the French veteran leading 2-1 in head-to-head records. The last encounter between the two was won by Fognini in 2013 at Monte Carlo.
Photo Gallery (by Brigitte Urban):