Lloyd Harris forged ahead with his giant-killing act at the ATP event in Dubai on Thursday, knocking out his third former Grand Slam contender in two weeks for a semi-final place.

The 81st-ranked South African shocked 2014 US Open finalist Kei Nishikori 6-1, 3-6, 6-3 to line up a showdown with Canadian Denis Shapovalov.

The third seed earlier advanced in his quarter-final over Jeremy Chardy 7-5, 6-4.

Harris is the first player from the qualifying ranks to get this far at the Aviation Club.

He began his main draw week with a knockout of top seed and reigning US Open champion Dominic Thiem after defeating Switzerland’s three-time Grand Slam winner Stan Wawrinka last week in Doha – also as a qualifier.

He will face Shapovalov in a first-time meeting.

“I’ve had a lot of matches this week, I feel like I’m  playing two tournaments,” the winner said.

“I tried to stick ot my routine. I knew Kei would be tough – like the rest of my matches this week.

“I tried to stay calm and focused, I felt confident on court.”

Harris sent over 14 aces as opposed to one for NIshikori, he broke Asia’s top player four times.

“There were lots of ups and down,” the South African said. “In the third set I managed to find my rhythm again, I used that to get in the late break.

“I’m glad to reach the semi-finals here,”

After securing the first Top 20 wins of his career over  the past two weeks in the Gulf, Harris finds his confidence rising.

“A couple of wins have shown I can compete with anyone on the Tour.”

Main photo:- Qualifier Lloyd Harris in action in Dubai by ATPTour.com


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