• Benneteau eases past Harrison, into Sydney semis

    1/10/13 5:00 AM | Ricky Dimon
    Benneteau eases past Harrison, into Sydney semis Julien Benneteau dismisses Ryan Harrison in routine straight sets on Thursday in Sydney. Benneteau is joined in the semifinals by Kevin Anderson, who ousted Denis Istomin.

    Julien Benneteau d. Ryan Harrison 6-4, 6-2

    Bennteau's bid for a return to the Apia International final continued in fine fashion on Thursday afternoon. The Frenchman did not face a single break point as he rolled over Harrison in one hour and 11 minutes during quarterfinal action. Benneteau broke right away to begin that match and that was all he needed in the first set. Harrison won only seven return points even though his opponent served at a mere 41 percent.

    The 20-year-old American completely lost the plot by donating serve at 2-2 in the second. From there it was full steam ahead for Benneteau, who added one more break at 4-2 before closing out the proceedings on serve. Both players finished with three aces and two double-faults, and Benneteau won 81 percent of his first-serve points. The world No. 35 will battle Kevin Anderson for a place in the title match.

    Kevin Anderson d. Denis Istomin 6-4, 6-3

    Another all-unseeded affair saw Anderson get past Istomin in one hour and 23 minutes. Anderson turned in a stellar performance in the return game, breaking his opponent four times. The 6'7'' South African dropped his own serve once in the opening set but lost just seven service points in the second and fought off the only break point he faced.

    Istomin had taken out Fernando Verdasco on Wednesday, but he could not find the range in this one. The Uzbek fired a mere one ace while putting in a disappointing 52 percent of his first serves. Anderson finished things off in appropriate fashion, breaking at 5-3 for victory.

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Current ATP-rankings

1. Djokovic 12 500 pts
2. Murray 8 750 pts
3. Federer 8 670 pts
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