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Friday, July 13, 2012
No. 1 Fernando Verdasco moves on

Associated Press

UMAG, Croatia -- Fernando Verdasco will take on fellow Spaniard Marcel Granollers, while home favorite Marin Cilic will face defending champion Alexandr Dolgopolov in the semifinals of the Croatia Open on Saturday.

For the first time since the inaugural tournament in 1990, the top four seeds will compete for a place in the final.

Top-seeded Verdasco defeated Russian wild card Andrey Kuznetsov 6-2, 6-2 on Friday, while Granollers rallied to beat Germany's Matthias Bachinger 1-6, 6-3, 7-5.

Verdasco, the 2008 champion, saved all six break points he faced and converted 3 of 7 break chances.

"Obviously, I am very happy with the way I progress here," Verdasco said. "Being in the semifinals is a very good thing. I played really good today."

Fourth-seeded Granollers lost the first set in just 31 minutes. He had a 5-3 lead in the third set, but then lost serve before breaking again for the victory.

Second-seeded Cilic beat American Wayne Odesnik 6-4, 6-0, and third-seeded Dolgopolov defeated Carlos Berlocq of Argentina 6-4, 6-4.

"I needed a few games in the beginning to adjust," Cilic said. "I played very well when I needed it."