Chennai: Defending champion Stanislas Wawrinka survived some anxious against Gilles Muller before proceeding into the men's singles semifinals at the ATP Chennai Open tennis tournament here Friday.
Wawrinka, a two-time champion and top seed here, took an hour and 25 minutes to beat eighth seed Gilles Muller of Luxembourg 6-2 7-6 (4) on the main court of the SDAT Tennis Stadium.
In other matches, Slovenian qualifier Aljaz Bedene toppled fifth seed Guillermo Garcia Lopez 2-6 6-3 6-2 to gatecrash into the last four. Bedene had knocked out second seed Feliciano Lopez yesterday.
Third seed Roberto Bautista Agut saved a set point before prevailing over sixth seed Yen Hsun Lu of Chinese Taipei 7-6(7) 6-4. Fourth seed David Goffin beat Andreas Haider-Maurer 7-5 6-2 to make the last four and faces Wawrinka.
While the Swiss number two had a smooth sailing in the first set, the left-handed Muller gave the reigning Australian Open champion a tough time in the second.
"He really put a lot of pressure on me in the second set. I anyway expected the second set to be tight as he is a good player on the circuit. On the whole, I was aggressive in the match and happy to have won it," said Wawrinka.
On playing Goffin next, the world number four said: "It is going to be a tight match. He played great last season so I will have to be at my best".
Joining Wawrinka in the semis is his 2013 conqueror Bedene, who continues to make waves with his inspiring show.
The Slovenian, who has been living in the UK for nine years, play Bautista Agut in the semifinals tomorrow.
Both Bedene and Agut acknowledged each other as friends during their respective post match press conferences.
Both were identical in their comments to say "I hope it will be a good match tomorrow and hope I could win".
Agut, a finalist here in 2013, said that he is ready to win the title this time.
Bedene was aggressive from the word go and put pressure on Garcia Lopez by sending out three aces in his third game but the Spaniard managed to win his fourth game for 2-2.
In a sudden turn of events, Bedene was found wanting and Garcia Lopez converted one of his 11 break points. After that, the fifth seed easily bagged the first set.
Bedene, ranked 156, turned the tables quickly with variety in his shot selection and maintained the momentum by serving aces at will.