The Pole Hubert Hurkacz, defending champion and seeded N.1, easily beat the Czech Tomas Machac 6-3, 6-4 on Friday to reach the semi-finals of the ATP 250 tournament in Marseille, where he will face the Frenchman Ugo Humbert.
Untouchable on his serve, the great Pole, 8th player in the world, was content with a break in each set to get the better of Machac, 66th in the ATP ranking.
“He’s a very good player and he’s playing well at the moment. I knew it wouldn't be easy. I had to serve well, that's what I did and it helped me to be relaxed on the return games,” explained Hurkacz after the match.
“Tomorrow, I hope I will have a little support anyway. But I like it, I can’t wait,” he then smiled, in response to a question about his upcoming match against Frenchman Ugo Humbert.
Because before Hurkacz's victory, the first ticket for the semi-finals had in fact gone to Humbert, who had already reached this stage of the Marseille tournament in 2019 and 2021.
Seeded N.4, Humbert qualified by easily dominating the Spaniard Alejandro Davidovich Fokina (N.5), in two sets and just over an hour of play (6-1, 6-4).
Humbert, 25 years old and 21st player in the world, also won his first victory against the Spaniard, 24 years old and 24th in the ATP, who had beaten the Frenchman twice until then.
Thanks to this success, the Lorraine is certain to obtain the best ranking of his career on Monday, at least 19th place.
On Friday, the current French number two started strong by winning the first three games. On his momentum, he took the service of Davidovich Fokina a second time and folded the first set in less than half an hour (29 minutes).
The Spaniard then raised his level a little, but Humbert took the lead again by breaking in the 3rd game. 1-1. Intractable in his service, the Frenchman concluded with a shutout in one hour and 9 minutes.
On Saturday, he will find the man who ended his career at the last Australian Open. In the 3rd round, Hubert Hurkacz won in four sets, 3-6, 6-1, 7-6 (7/4), 6-3.