British No.2 Cameron Norrie won his 17th match of the season when he beat the second seed and top ranked Chilean, Cristian Garin, to reach the semi-finals of the Millennium Estoril Open – his second semi-final of the year.
It was a battle. He came out a bit sharper than me. I managed to play a good return game in the second set to break there and held my nerve and played some of my best tennis of the week at the 3-2, 4-2 games Cameron Norrie
In what proved to be a marathon two-hour 28-minute contest, Norrie, who received medical treatment to his left wrist after the first nine games, recovered from the loss of the opening set to deliver a 3-6 7-5 6-3 defeat on the 22nd ranked South American with five clay-court titles to his name.
Norrie, who is still chasing his first ATP Tour title, was happy with his performance as he prepares to take on former US Open champion Marin Cilic, the sixth seed, for a place in the final, the Croat having just squeezed past Kevin Anderson 7-6(7) in the opening set when the South African retired with a left abductor injury.
“I think it is one of my best wins ever on the clay,” Norrie said in his on-court interview on Amazon Prime.
“I held my nerve and then played some of my best tennis of the week.
“Garin is always so tough on the clay and I think [it’s] one of my best wins ever on the clay.
“It was a battle. He came out a bit sharper than me. I managed to play a good return game in the second set to break there and held my nerve and played some of my best tennis of the week at the 3-2, 4-2 games.”
However Garin, who is ranked some 28 places above Norrie, wasn’t happy telling via Jose Morgado’s twitter account: “I didn’t feel well on court, even in the first set. Never felt comfortable, never felt good. I’m worried.”
In the other two quarter-finals, Spain’s Albert Ramos Vinolas beat Frenchman Corentin Moutet 6-4 6-3 on his fourth match-point with a forehand winner.
Ramos Vinolas set up a semi-final against his younger compatriot Alejandro Davidovich Fokina, a Monte Carlo quarter-finalist who defeated Ugo Humbert of France 6-4 6-4.