Argentine tennis star Juan Martin del Potro has set up a blockbuster Auckland Classic semi-final against Spanish veteran David Ferrer, beating prodigious Russian Karen Khachanov in straight sets.
Renowned for his destructive service game, del Potro struggled to unleash his greatest weapon but still kept Ferrer pinned back with his forehand.
Instead of that, Del Potro broke again in game 7 when his rival placed a forehand long, and that was all he needed to clinch the opener after 2 good holds and a forehand victor in game 10 for a 6-4.
He broke late against a scampering Ferrer to earn a 6-4 first-set win before seizing another crucial break at 4-4 in the second set and serving out the match.
"If he has a good day, he is very risky as a lefty, he serves well and volleys".
While del Potro was trumped by the Spaniard in 2014, he has since beaten him three times, including at the 2016 Olympics and 2017 US Open.
The world number 21 emerged victorious 6-7 (7-9) 7-6 (7-3) 7-6 (7-5), with his win sealed in magnificent fashion as Bautista Agut somehow landed an audacious backhand lob inside the baseline.
A cold night with a light snow chance Friday
Light snow moves in Sunday evening and when it wraps up after midnight we could have a couple inches of snow back on the ground. The winds will still be breezy in the afternoon, but the temperatures will not rebound.
With all three sets going to tiebreak, the unerringly accurate Bautista Agut admitted he was feeling more than a touch tired on Friday.
However, with top seed American Jack Sock knocked out by German Peter Gojowczyk, Del Potro will be the favourite for the title.
"Yesterday and today, I played very consistently, without a lot of mistakes; for two years I haven't played more than two matches like this", Ferrer said.
Isner's powerful serve wasn't enough to save him in his match with Chung, the victor of last year's ATP Next Generation finals.
A potential final against Juan Martin del Potro awaits.
"I'm very focused to reach the final here".