Indianapolis: Frank Dancevic ended a run of three-straight losses to Dmitry Tursunov, upsetting the top seed 3-6, 7-6 (7/5), 6-2 to reach the semi-finals of the ATP hardcourt event here Friday.
But his Saturday test against third seed Sam Querrey, a winner over French number seven Marc Gicquel 6-4, 7-5, will be a show of strength between two big hitting rising stars. Querrey hammered 19 aces in the win over Gicquel.
The Canadian won their only other meeting in Sydney two years ago, but Querrey has his eye on the prize this weekend.
"I might be favoured as the seed," said the 22-year-old who is shadowed at US events by an informal support group of "Samurai" friends complete with body paint and screams of support every time their man makes a winning shot. "But everybody can play.”
"I like my chances through, I`m playing well. But Frank is also playing great. This is my third year of reaching the semi-finals I`m finally hoping to make the jump into the final."
At the bottom of the draw, 2005 champion Robby Ginepri returned to his glory days by beating fellow American Alex Bogomolov 7-5, 6-1. Ginepri will play either Wayne Odesnik or John Isner.
Russian Tursunov, who lives in California, had beaten Dencevic in the final on grass at Eastbourne the week before Wimbledon.
He has also defeated Dancevic in the final here two years ago after winning their first meeting at Queen`s Club in London in 2007.
"This is my first hardcourt week and I felt a bit nervous," admitted 24-year-old Dancevic, the world 121.
"But I`ve been playing well from the first round. I`m glad I was able to play solid against Dmitry and close it out."
Dancevic fired nine aces, with 29 winners and three breaks of the patchy Tursunov serve.
The Canadian began imposing himself on the match in the third game of the second set when a Tursunov double-fault led to a break for 2-1, a margin enough to eventually level the sets.
In the third, the man from Niagara Falls took control to run out the winner during a week when he duplicated his 2007 habit of driving to Indiana from his home on the US-Canadian border with his girlfriend.
Dancevic ended a string of success for Tursunov at the tournament where the the number 27 won in 2007 before losing the final a year ago to Gilles Simon.
"He started getting hold of my serve in the second set," said Tursunov. "I had chances in the second set tiebreaker but I couldn`t convert them.”
"He got lots of free points - he served well, I didn`t."