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Darcis defeats Bjorkman to reach final; Davenport plays for title

Darcis defeats Bjorkman to reach final; Davenport plays for title

Steve Darcis advanced to his second career ATP final by defeating Jonas Bjorkman 4-6, 6-1, 6-4 Saturday at the Regions Morgan Keegan Championships.
Darcis will play either Robin Soderling, who knocked off top-seeded Andy Roddick on Friday night, or Radek Stepanek for the title at The Racquet Club on Sunday.
Later Saturday, Lindsay Davenport will play Olga Govortsova of Belarus for the Cellular South Cup championship.
Darcis, ranked 81st, is making his Memphis debut.
"It's a great moment," Darcis said. "I will try to have fun tomorrow. It doesn't matter who I'm going to play. Anyway it will be a tough match. I'll try to take the chance at what the other guy leaves me and see."
Darcis had won only two ATP-level matches this year. He reached the second round in Sydney and defeated Lukas Dlouhy in Davis Cup play. He won his first title at Amersfoot in the Netherlands in July
Bjorkman played in the semifinals of the event for the first time since 1997 when he lost to Todd Woodbridge in the finals. He hadn't been in a semifinal since Nottingham last year and came in with 6-9 record in singles.
The Swede, who turns 36 later this month, defeated Paul Capdeville, No. 5 seed Sam Querrey and Donald Young to advance. He started off the semifinal looking as if he might continue his unexpected run, breaking Darcis in the third game of the first set and holding serve to win 6-4.
Darcis took control during the fourth game of the second set, which featured 18 points and four break points. Darcis broke Bjorkman to go up 3-1 as the Swede hit a forehand long and then put a backhand into the net.
"After he broke me, it felt like he got more relaxed and started to take advantage of his confidence and started to swing a little bit more and got a few more passing shots by me, and then got the confidence from that," Bjorkman said. "It's pretty good sometimes to lose even when you play well ... Unfortunately, I came up short against somebody who played a little bit better."
Bjorkman, who fought off eight of 11 break points, tried to answer in the third set and was serving well until the seventh game when Darcis broke the Swede to trail 4-3. Darcis served out the match and won as Bjorkman put another shot into the net.
Darcis didn't face a break point in the final two sets. He rallied and beat Vincent Spadea in a third-set tiebreak in the opening round this week even though Spadea served for the match at one point.
"I was a little bit lucky to pass the first round. And after this, I took a lot of confidence, and mentally I was feeling great," Darcis said.


Updated : 2021-03-04 13:47 GMT+08:00