British No 1 Dan Evans sets up Monte Carlo Masters semi-final showdown against fourth seed Stefanos Tsitsipas after winning his fourth match in five days; he headed into the tournament having not won a tour-level match on clay in four years
Last Updated: 16/04/21 3:23pm
Dan Evans followed up his stunning upset of Novak Djokovic at the Monte Carlo Masters by coming through in three sets against David Goffin to reach the semi-finals.
Evans stunned world No 1 Djokovic on Thursday for the biggest win of his career and he carried on his fine form in the Principality to battle to a 5-7 6-3 6-4 victory over 11th seed Goffin.
The British No 1 has now earned as many tour-level clay-court victories and wins at Masters tournaments this week as in the rest of his career combined and could surpass his career-high ranking of 26 next week.
Players to defeat Novak Djokovic on clay since 2019:
That’s it. That’s the list.
— US Open Tennis (@usopen) April 15, 2021
“I played good today,” said Evans. “I felt a bit more pressure today to not [just] win yesterday and give a bad performance today. It wasn’t easy after the match yesterday, I felt really tired afterwards. To get back and focus, it was difficult.
“I am proud of how I came back today, especially with what happened in the first set. I felt [my] concentration wasn’t great and I am really happy with coming through. Yesterday, would not have been worth it with a bad performance today.
“He was being aggressive towards me. At the start, I was [having to] retrieve. He got on top and I could feel that. He had a little chance at the start of the second set, which I got out of and it just turned it for me, I think.”
As he had against Djokovic, Evans began superbly but Goffin found his range on his forehand at the end of the opening set, recovering from 3-5 to take it with a run of four games in a row.
But he could not maintain that level and Evans forged ahead early in the second set, this time holding onto his advantage.
1⃣st @atptour Masters Semi-final 🙌
How would you sum up Dan Evans’ week in Monaco?#BackTheBrits 🇬🇧 pic.twitter.com/z7MpPcYeI0
— LTA (@the_LTA) April 16, 2021
Evans has beaten 4 former ATP Masters 1000 finalists at MC Masters
1R: d. 2019 Monte Carlo Masters finalist – Dusan Lajovic
2R: d. 2021 Miami Open champion – Hubert Hurkacz
3R: d. 36-time ATP Masters 1000 champion Novak Djokovic
QF: d. 2019 Cincinnati Masters finalist David Goffin
The 30-year-old has a rare ability to bring out his best at the biggest moments and he dug in brilliantly to save four break points at 4-4 in the deciding set – he saved 15 of 17 during the match.
Goffin could not show similar fortitude and a wild final shot drew a huge roar from Evans as he celebrated setting up a last-four encounter with Stefanos Tsitsipas.
First Monte-Carlo semi-final set:
🇬🇷 Tsitsipas v. Evans 🇬🇧 pic.twitter.com/BEwYhPOjWZ
— ATP Tour (@atptour) April 16, 2021
Evans, who will be partnering Neal Skupski in the doubles quarter-finals event later on Thursday, admitted, “I feel fine. Yesterday, was a bit busy [with] a lot of people messaging and a lot of people speaking, so I didn’t use my phone too much after. It was a little draining yesterday, but I’ll take it.”
Greek star Tsitsipas advanced to the semi-finals when his opponent, Alejandro Davidovich Fokina, was forced to retire due to injury having lost the first set 7-5 on Court Rainier III.
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Source : Sky Sports