MONTPELLIER, France, Feb. 7 (UPI) -- Defending champion Richard Gasquet advanced to the semifinals of the ATP's Open Sud de France with a straight-set win Friday.
Gasquet, the No. 1 seed at the tournament, defeated qualifier Albano Olivetti 6-4, 6-2 without facing a break point. Gasquet dropped a mere seven points in nine games serving, winning 83 percent of the points on serve.
He'll go against third-seeded Jerzy Janowicz in Saturday's semifinals.
Janowicz was a 6-2, 6-4 winner over No. 7-seeded Edouard Roger-Vasselin in just more than an hour. Janowicz had 18 aces and saved all three break points he faced. He lost 14 points in nine games serving.
Also Friday, fifth-seeded Gael Monfils topped Denis Istomin 6-4, 6-4 behind four breaks and No. 6-seeded Jarkko Nieminen edged qualifier Marc Gicquel 6-3, 3-6, 7-6 (7-5) despite winning fewer than half the points (85-of-180) in the match.
Monfils and Nieminen square off in the first semifinal Saturday. Monfils enjoys a 3-0 lifetime edge in matches against Nieminen. Gasquet and Janowicz have split their two previous meetings.