Lucky loser Lucas Pouille is one match away from reaching his maiden ATP World Tour final at the Auckland Open.
Lucky loser Lucas Pouille is one match away from his first final on the ATP World Tour, after easing into the last four of the Auckland Open on Thursday.
Pouille was a late addition to the draw in New Zealand after fifth seed Tommy Robredo withdrew with an injured adductor muscle.
And the 20-year-old Frenchman continued to make the most of his unexpected opportunity as he coasted to a 6-3 6-2 quarter-final win over Albert Ramos-Vinolas.
Pouille broke his opponent at the earliest opportunity in each set as he booked a semi-final clash with countryman Adrian Mannarino.
"I played a very good match, very solid from the baseline," Pouille said.
"I am happy it was fast, as it was very hot, the hottest day of the tournament.
"I am lucky to be here, as I was not supposed to play. I had my flight booked earlier in the week, then we heard about Robredo. I knew I had a good opportunity and I took my chance."
Mannarino also enjoyed a comfortable victory in his quarter-final with Alejandro Falla, taking just 56 minutes to wrap up a 6-3 6-1 success.
Kevin Anderson came out on top in the clash between the only two seeds to make the last eight.
The giant South African sent down 14 aces as he saw off Steve Johnson 6-4 7-6 (10-8).
Anderson will now face qualifier Jiri Vesely, who built on his triumph over second seed Ernests Gulbis with a 6-2 6-3 beating of Donald Young.