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Pune, February 8, 2020
Czech star player Jiri Vesely produced a brilliant performance to register a sensational come-from-behind 6-7 (8-10), 7-6 (7-3), 7-6 (9-7) win against the second-seed Ricardas Berankis and entered the singles final at the third edition of the Tata Open Maharashtra at the Mhalunge Balewadi Stadium here on Saturday.
Indian pair of Ramanathan Ramkumar and Purav Raja will look to extend the Indian challenge when they will take on third-seeded pair of Jonathan Earlich and Andrei Vasilevski in the doubles semi-final later in the night.
Andre Goransson and Christopher Rungkat have already made their way into the doubles summit clash with a 6-4, 7-6 (7-1) in the first semi-final on Friday.
In an intense fight between Vesely and Berankis in the last-4 clash that saw all three sets going in to decider. While Berankis won the first set, Vesely bagged the second to keep his challenge alive during his third appearance at the Tata Open.
When Vesely and Berankis met last time in the round-of-128 during 2019 US Open, the Lithuanian star clinched the marathon five-setter encounter. Six months later both played with the same grit and hardly game each other any chances to score in the neck-and-neck match.
While Berankis entered the semi-final with 4-6, 7-6 (7-4), 6-2 win over Japanese Yuichi Sugita, Vesely overcame Ilya Ivashka of Belarus 2-6, 6-1, 7-6 (11-9).
The 26-year-old Vesely, who stunned then NextGen star Alexander Zverev in the first round of 2019 Wimbledon, made World No. 73 Berankis work hard in the last two sets in the epic three hours and two minutes clash to clinch the thrilling encounter.
With the win over Berankis, Vesely made his way into his first final at the Tata Open Maharashtra. He will face the winner from the second semi-final between Italian Roberto Marcora and James Duckworth.