The 3rd seed and a former Tokyo champion David Goffin is through to the fifth semi-final of the season, ousting Hyeon Chung 6-2, 6-2 in swift 54 minutes. David and Hyeon faced each other for the fourth time and the Belgian scored the third victory after one of the best performances of the season.
The Korean defeated Marin Cilic in the second round but stood no chance today, taking six return points and never creating a break point. The younger player served at 74% but that gave him nothing against such a strong rival, losing almost half of the points in his games and suffering four breaks from six opportunities offered to David.
Firing from all cylinders from the very first stroke, Goffin hit 24 winners and five unforced errors, overshadowing Chung's 15 winners and 15 mistakes and controlling the scoreboard from start to finish. David broke in the very first game with a smash winner at the net, firing four winners in game two to confirm the advantage and settle into the desired rhythm.
Hyeon gathered some breathing space in the next couple of service games before spraying a forehand error in game seven, sending David further in front and losing the set when his rival hit three winners in the next game.
The Belgian broke at love in the third game with another forehand winner, holding at love with an ace and earning another break with a backhand crosscourt winner that sent him 4-1 in front. Serving for the win, Goffin converted the fourth match point at 5-2, happy with the way he performed and hoping for more of the same against world no.
1 Novak Djokovic on Saturday. Taking advantage of a decent draw, Reilly Opelka has advanced into the fourth ATP semi-final and the first above the ATP 250 level, beating Yasutaka Uchiyama 6-3, 6-3 in an hour and 18 minutes.
The American blasted 16 aces and never faced a break point, dropping 12 points in nine service games and mounting the pressure on the other side of the net after hitting 36 winners and 14 unforced errors. Uchiyama gave his best to stay in touch but wasn't able to after 16 winners and eight unforced errors, playing against ten break chances and giving serve away three times to propel Reilly into the last four.
The American drew first blood in the sixth game after a double fault from the Japanese, confirming the advantage with a service winner and closing the set with a service winner at 5-3. The second set was more fluid and it kicked off with six commanding holds on both sides (only three points for the returners) before Reilly broke at 15 with a forehand winner that pushed him in front, bringing the next game home with another powerful serve and finishing the job with the third break in game nine that propelled him into the semis.
A qualifier John Millman saved match points in the first match of the tournament just to get into the main draw and is now into the semi-final, toppling Taro Daniel 6-4, 6-0 in 79 minutes for the first semi-final since Budapest in April 2018.
John gave away 18 points in his games, losing serve twice and erasing that deficit with a rock-solid performance on the return, stealing 56% of the points in the Japanese's games and breaking him six times from 12 opportunities.
The Aussie raced into a 5-2 lead before Daniel saved a set point in game nine to break back and return to the positive side of the scoreboard, only to suffer a break a few minutes later to hand the set to his rival. The second set lasted for half an hour and Millman was the only player on the court, delivering a bagel and racing into the semi-final.