Caroline Wozniacki and Angelique Kerber reached the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix final after beating their opponents Simona Halep and Madison Brengle respectively.
Reigning champion Kei Nishikori booked his place in the Barcelona Open final with a 6-1, 6-2 thrashing of Slovakia’s Martin Klizan on Saturday.
The 25-year-old Japanese will face Spain’s Pablo Andujar in Sunday’s final after he upset compatriot David Ferrer 7-6 (7/5), 6-3.
Klizan had won the only previous meeting between the two in a shock straight sets win over an injured Nishikori at last year’s French Open.
However, there was never any danger of a repeat in the Catalan capital as the world number five romped through the first set in just 28 minutes.
Klizan offered some more resistance at the start of the second set as he held onto his serve in a marathon opening game that included eight deuces.
Nishikori, though, won the next five games to take him to the brink of victory before serving it out comfortably.
— ATP World Tour (@ATPWorldTour) April 25, 2015
“I played very well and I am happy, but if I want to win the final tomorrow I need to maintain my concentration and not commit errors,” said Nishikori.
“Andujar beat me two years ago in Madrid.”
The other semi-final was much more tightly fought as Andujar produced what he admitted to being some of the best tennis of his career to beat Ferrer for the first time.
“This is one of the best games I have played in my career,” said the world number 66.
“I knew that David is a very solid player from the baseline and it is very difficult to compete with him from there, so I tried to pressure his second serve and come to the net when I could.
“In the end it was a combination of me playing well and him making some mistakes at the start of the second set.”
Ferrer twice fought back from a break down in the first set before 29-year-old Andujar edged it in the tie-break, but serve was much more dominant in the second as one early break was all Andujar needed to serve it out.
Amazing Andujar 102-150 in career matches on ATP not sure why he has had so many up and downs, looks like such a solid player
— Brad Gilbert (@bgtennisnation) April 25, 2015
And he called on the crowd in Barcelona to produce a Davis Cup style atmosphere to inspire him to another upset in the final.
“I am inspired. I think I have worked hard and in the end things are going very well, and there is no better place than here in Barcelona surrounded by my people.
“I hope it will be like a Davis Cup atmosphere. I hope the fans give everything tomorrow. I need them because Nishikori is playing very well.”
Rafael Nadal's stuttering season continued as he was stunned 6-4, 7-6 (8/6) by Italy's Fabio Fognini at the Barcelona Open on Thursday.
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Nadal, an eight-time champion in Barcelona, had won four of the previous five meetings between the two, but also lost to Fognini on clay earlier this season in Rio de Janeiro.
However, despite saving three match points in the second set tie-break, a forehand error gifted Fognini a shock place in the quarter-finals where he will meet Pablo Andujar. Defeat means Nadal has just one win against a top-10 ranked opponent in seven tournaments so far in 2015.
"To win against the best player in history on this surface means double. I gives me a huge mental boost," said Fognini, who was cheered on by WTA star girlfriend Flavia Pennetta.
"I had the chance to beat him in Rio in a very tough game in 35 degree heat when the two of us were dead by the end. Today, I knew I would have a chance. I tried to stick to my tactics, give my best and in the end I achieved it."
Fognini edged a tight first set with the only break of serve in the 10th game. Nadal, though, appeared set to take the match to a deciding set when broke to lead 4-2 and 5-4 in the second.
The 14-time Grand Slam champion failed to serve it out and despite Fognini suffering a nasty fall, Nadal quickly fell behind in the tie-break.
Some sensational tennis allowed him to save three match points from 3-6 down, but a big serve from Fognini followed by Nadal's 30th error of the match sealed his fate.
Defending champion Kei Nishikori thrashed Colombian 15th seed Santiago Giraldo 6-2, 6-1 to move into the quarter-finals in a repeat of last year's final.
The Japanese top seed is making his first appearance of the season on clay in the Catalan capital, but showed no signs of rustiness early on as he romped into a 4-0 lead.
Giraldo responded by getting a break of serve back at 4-2, but Nishikori then reeled off the next seven games to take him to the brink of victory and he served it out to make the last eight with ease.
"It was a harder match than the scoreline indicates. I just played better on the decisive points," said Nishikori.
The world number five will face Roberto Bautista Agut on Friday after the Spaniard overcame Pablo Cuevas 7-6 (7/5), 6-2.
"It will be a tough match because Roberto is a good player, especially on clay. I expect there will be a lot of long points like today," he added.
Third seed David Ferrer had a slightly tougher afternoon against 19-year-old Swede Elias Ymer despite winning 6-3, 6-4. Ferrer took the first set comfortably, but was 4-0 down in the second before winning six straight game to claim his place in the quarters.
"It was the first time I had played against him and he is a player with a great future," said Ferrer. "I knew I wasn't playing at 100 percent and I had to keep running and stay strong mentality."