Shanghai – Juan Martin del Potro kept his errors to a minimum as the Argentine breezed past Spain's Nicolas Almagro 6-3 6-3 to march into the semifinals of the Shanghai Open on Friday.
Del Potro, seeded sixth, had also defeated Almagro in last week's Japan Open semi-finals and now needs one more victory to seal his spot for the season-ending ATP World Tour Finals in London next month.
The Argentine, who was suffering from fever during the earlier stages of the hard-court tournament, committed just eight unforced errors during his win and faced a single break point, which he went on the save.
“I played very well today, very solid,” Del Potro told reporters. “I played aggressive. I hit my forehand very well.
“I like the way I played today. I just want to keep improving (and) keep going far in this tournament.”
Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga also took a positive step towards confirming his spot for London with a comfortable 6-2 6-3 win against German Florian Mayer on Friday.
World number three Andy Murray's withdrawal from the Tour Finals due to injury has meant anyone finishing ninth or better in the race to London will qualify for the prestigious season-ending tournament.
Top seed Novak Djokovic, who lost his world number one ranking to Rafa Nadal on Monday, will take on France's Gael Monfils for a place in the last four.
Spain's Nadal, who last week lost to Djokovic in the China Open final, faces Swiss Stanislas Wawrinka in the other last-eight clash on Friday. – Reuters