1/10/13 5:23 PM | Ricky Dimon
There will be no rematch of the 2012 Sydney final, as Jarkko Nieminen went down to Bernard Tomic on Thursday. Tomic joins last year's runner-up, Julien Benneteau, in the semifinals.
Bernard Tomic recovered impressively from a minor collapse in the first set to defeat Jarkko Nieminen 6-7(6), 6-4, 6-2 in the quarterfinals of the Apia International on Thursday evening. Tomic served at 70 percent and broke his opponent five times to advance in one hour and 51 minutes.
The 20-year-old initially did well to break later in the opener with Nieminen serving for it at 5-3. Tomic eventually had leads of 5-2 and 6-4 in the ensuing tiebreaker, but he made a woeful forehand error on set point on his own serve. Nieminen quickly finished it off at 7-6 with a perfect forehand volley winner.
From there, however, it was mostly all Tomic. The 64th-ranked Australian held serve the whole way, saving one break point in the second and facing none in the third. He broke at 5-4 to force a decider and earned another scalp of the Nieminen serve early in the third to take complete control.
Nieminen, who beat Julien Benneteau in last year's Sydney final, turned in a mostly solid performance but fell away after the initial third-set break. The 31-year-old double-faulted four the third time down match point at 2-5.
"I'm really happy with today's performance and how I played," said Tomic who struck six aces without double-faulting en route to a showdown against Andreas Seppi. "But I'm ready to go for tomorrow's semifinal. I'm really confident now, and I got a shot to get into the final for the first time in my career."
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