• Baghdatis takes on Lacko in Zagreb semifinals

    2/4/12 5:49 PM | Ricky Dimon
    Baghdatis takes on Lacko in Zagreb semifinals A spot in the Zagreb final is at stake as Marcos Baghdatis and Lukas Lacko square off on Saturday. The winner will face either Mikhail Youzhny or Michael Berrer.

    Marcos Baghdatis and Lukas Lacko will be going head-to-head for the second time in their careers when they clash in the semifinals of the PBZ Zagreb Indoors on Saturday. Their only previous encounter came in the 2010 Wimbledon first round, with Lacko prevailing 6-3, 2-6, 6-3, 6-1.

    Both players are in stellar form to start the 2012 season. Baghdatis reached the Brisbane quarterfinals and the Sydney semis before a second-round Australian Open loss to Stanislas Wawrinka that featured a racket-breaking tirade. So far this week the Cypriot has taken out Lukas Rosol, Lukasz Kubot, and defending champion Ivan Dodig.

    Lacko qualified in Melbourne then scored a five-set win over Ivan Ljubicic and a four-set victory over Donald Young. The Slovak lost to eventual runner-up Rafael Nadal in the third round. Lacko has picked up where left off at the year's first Grand Slam, earning wins in Zagreb at the expense of Potito Starace, Alex Bogomolov, and Robin Haase.

    Baghdatis and Lacko possess flat, powerful groundstrokes that work well on fast hard courts. Lacko has a slightly bigger serve and will have a good chance of pulling off the slight upset if he puts in a high percentage of first deliveries. However, this is his first ATP semifinal and Baghdatis' experience should be the difference in a close three-setter.

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