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  • Monfils meets Seppi, Tsonga takes on Davydenko

    9/21/12 11:52 PM | Ricky Dimon
    Monfils meets Seppi, Tsonga takes on Davydenko Metz is one round away from an all-French final between Gael Monfils and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga. They first have to get past Andreas Seppi and Nikolay Davydenko, respectively, on Saturday.

    (5) Andreas Seppi vs. (7) Gael Monfils

    Seppi and Monfils will be going head-to-head for the fourth time in their careers at the ATP level when they do battle in the Moselle Open semifinals on Saturday. Monfils has won all three of their previous encounters (and one on the Challenger circuit), all on hard courts. A pair of 2010 encounters went the Frenchman's way; 7-6(4), 3-6, 7-6(3) in Marseille and 6-4, 6-4 in Tokyo.

    Monfils is down at No. 44 in the world due to complete inactivity since May, but his comeback is off to a good start. Metz's No. 7 seed beat Olivier Rochus and Nicolas Mahut in straight sets before outlasting Philipp Kohlschreiber 6-7(3), 6-4, 6-4. Seppi is a solid 30-22 this season and he registers just four spots off his career-high ranking at 28th. The fifth-seeded Italian booked his spot in the last four with wins over Ivan Dodig, Vincent Millot, and Florian Mayer. Look for Monfils to reach the title match after two competitive sets.

    (1) Jo-Wilfried Tsonga vs. Nikolay Davydenko

    Tsonga and Davydenko are set for just their third career meeting on Saturday in Metz. Davydenko took both of their previous matchups; 7-6(0), 6-2 five years ago in Moscow and in a third-set tiebreaker at the 2008 Masters Cup. Of course, this time around Tsonga is a heavy favorite. The seventh-ranked Frenchman is 43-17 for his 2012 campaign following straight-set victories this week over Clement Reix and Jesse Levine.

    Davydenko is slowing down considerably at 31 years old. The Russian has plunged to No. 48 in the world and he is just barely over .500 at 20-19 for the season. So far in Metz he has taken out Mischa Zverev, Gilles Muller, and Ivo Karlovic. You never know what you are going to get from Davydenko right now, but Tsonga should win this in straights regardless of his opponent's performance.


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