Pucinelli De Almeida Reaches Braga Open Semi-Finals

Matheus Pucinelli de Almeida (photo: Sara Falcao)

BRAGA/STARNBERG, September 23, 2022

Four unseeded players have reached the semi-finals of the €45,730 Braga Open. Matheus Pucinelli de Almeida of Brazil continued his excellent run of form this week in Portugal with a 6-3, 6-3 win over Spanish qualifier Pablo Llamas Ruiz on Friday.

The 21-year-old Campinas native, who upset home favourite and top seed Nuno Borges in the second round, converted four of his seven break-point chances to advance in one hour and 39 minutes. The World No. 216, a three-time champion on the ITF World Tennis Tour, will take on Jelle Sels in his second Challenger semi-final of the season. The 27-year-old Dutchman edged out seventh-seeded Russian Alexander Shevchenko 7-6(1), 7-6(9) in two hours and 11 minutes.

In the bottom half of the draw, Timofey Skatov knocked off No. 2 seed Carlos Taberner of Spain 7-6(2), 6-0. The 242nd-ranked Kazakh broke his rival’s serve four times and won 58 per cent of the total points played to secure victory in one hour and 58 minutes.

Up next for Skatov will be Nicolas Moreno de Alboran. The 25-year-old US-American emerged victorious from the battle of the qualifiers, winning 7-6(6), 7-5 over Javier Cosano Barranco of Spain. The encounter lasted two hours and 27 minutes.