Kohlschreiber, Sandgren, Norrie, Struff reach Auckland semis

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AUCKLAND, New Zealand — Former champion Philipp Kohlschreiber defeated second-seeded Fabio Fognini again 6-3, 6-1 to reach the ASB Classic semifinals on Thursday.

Unseeded Kohlschreiber, who won the tournament in 2008, will have to go through Tennys Sandgren to reach another final in Auckland on his 12th visit.

The other semifinal will feature New Zealand-born Englishman Cameron Norrie, a wild card, against Jan-Lennard Struff. Norrie or Struff will reach his first ATP final.

Fognini called for the trainer at one point, and in the second set he made little effort to resist Kohlschreiber’s progress to his seventh win over the Italian in nine meetings.

“I’m still improving my game, even at 35 years old. I think you are still able to improve,” Kohlschreiber said.

He captured his first service break in the third game, held serve in the following game which lasted 10 minutes and contained five deuces, then clinched the set with relative comfort, breaking Fognini again in the ninth game.

Sandgren, an Australian Open quarterfinalist last year, defeated Leonardo Mayer 6-3, 7-6 (5) without facing a break point.

Sandgren had eight break-point chances but converted only one.

Norrie beat Taylor Fritz 7-6 (3), 6-3, and Struff beat fourth-seeded Pablo Carreno Busta 7-6 (5), 6-7 (8), 7-6 (9) in three hours to ensure no seeds reached the semifinals.

Nishioka beats Shapovalov to win Korean Open

2022 US Open - Day 1
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SEOUL, South Korea – Japan’s Yoshihito Nishioka claimed his second career title after beating fourth seed Denis Shapovalov of Canada 6-4, 7-6 (5) to win the Korean Open.

The 27-year-old Japanese, who beat top seed and world No.2 Casper Ruud in the quarterfinals, was impressive in defense and his counter-punching style eventually wore down his higher ranked opponent in just under two hours at the Seoul Olympic Park Tennis Center.

The unseeded Nishioka, appearing in his second championship match this year after reaching the Washington final in August, started the brighter and found his rhythm early to claim the first set.

The second set saw momentum change as Shapavolov found his range from the backcourt to take a 3-1 lead. But Nishioka rallied to take the set into a tiebreak where he held firm to win his first tournament since his maiden title at the Shenzen Open in 2018 – where he also beat Shapovalov in their only previous meeting.

The ATP Tour returned to Seoul for the first time since 1996 after the city was awarded a single-year license to stage the Korean Open.

Mayar Sherif becomes first Egyptian to win WTA Tour event

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PARMA, Italy — Mayar Sherif became the first Egyptian to win a WTA Tour event by beating top-seeded Maria Sakkari 7-5, 6-3 at the Parma Ladies Open.

Besides earning her first career title, Sherif also notched her first win over a top-10 opponent.

Along with Tunisia’s Ons Jabeur, who reached the Wimbledon and U.S. Open finals this year, Sherif is raising the profile of tennis in North Africa.

The 74th-ranked Sherif actually had to win two matches on Saturday, first overcoming sixth-seeded Ana Bogdan 6-4, 3-6, 6-4 in the semifinals, which were postponed a day due to rain.

The seventh-ranked Sakkari beat Danka Kovinic 7-5, 6-2 in her semifinal earlier Saturday.