SHENZHEN, September 29, 2018
Frenchman Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Yoshihito Nishioka of Japan will compete in Sunday’s singles final of the Shenzhen Open. Both players will bid for their first ATP World Tour title.
Herbert fought past Australian teenager Alex de Minaur 7-5, 2-6, 7-6(8). The World No. 67 from Schiltigheim won nine points less than his opponent and needed to save two match points to prevail after two hours and 34 minutes. Herbert finished runner-up to Kevin Anderson at the 2015 Winston-Salem Open.
— Tennis TV (@TennisTV) 29. September 2018
“I’m really happy and proud of myself to be in the final,” Herbert was quoted on ATP World Tour.com. “It was a really tough match today against Alex, who I played in Wimbledon and that was a big fight too. I’m happy to be through to my second ATP final. My plan is to rest and have a good night and be ready for tomorrow. It’s my dream to lift the trophy.
“Against Alex, you feel like you have to win the point four times. He has wheels and he’s running so fast. He almost got to the last one, where I thought he had no chance. It was an amazing match point and it’s one you remember for a long time.”
Nishioka knocks off Verdasco
Nishioka, who battled through the qualifying, rallied past No. 5 seed Fernando Verdasco 1-6, 6-3, 7-6(5). The 23-year-old from Japan capitalized on three of his 11 break point chances to seal victory in two hours and 19 minutes.
“I’m very excited for this moment,” said Nishioka ahead of his maiden final on the ATP World Tour. “I was not thinking I could reach the final when I was in qualifying. But this is very exciting for me, to be in my first final. I know there will be pressure tomorrow, but I will try to do my best.”
Herbert won the only previous meeting between the two in the second round of the 2013 Yokohama Challenger.