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Sinner extends winning run, joins Zverev in Vienna semis

Erste Bank Open - Day 6

VIENNA, AUSTRIA - OCTOBER 28: Jannik Sinner of Italy reacts in his match against Dennis Novak of Austria during day six of the Erste Bank Open tennis tournament at Wiener Stadthalle on October 28, 2021 in Vienna, Austria. (Photo by Thomas Kronsteiner/Getty Images)

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VIENNA - Jannik Sinner stretched his winning streak on indoor hard courts to 11 matches and 22 sets Friday by beating Casper Ruud 7-5, 6-1 in the quarterfinals of the Erste Bank Open.

The seventh-seeded Italian will take on American qualifier Frances Tiafoe for a place in Sunday’s final. In the other semifinal, Alexander Zverev takes on Spanish teenager Carlos Alcaraz, who upset seventh-ranked Matteo Berrettini 6-1, 6-7 (2), 7-6 (5).

Ruud, who has won a tour-leading five titles this season, led 5-4 in the opening set but the Norwegian lost nine of the next 10 games as Sinner gained control in most rallies.

The win puts Sinner in a favorable position for one of two remaining slots at next month’s ATP finals, leapfrogging Hubert Hurkacz and the injured Rafael Nadal into eighth place.

Tiafoe defeated Diego Schwartzman 6-4, 7-6 (6), one day after upsetting top-seeded Stefanos Tsitsipas.

The 49th-ranked American squandered a 5-1 lead in the second set but broke Schwartzman when the Argentine served for the set at 6-5. Tiafoe saved a set point in the tiebreaker before converting his second match point.

Zverev defeated Felix Auger-Aliassime 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 to improve to 23-2 since losing to the Canadian in the fourth round of Wimbledon.