Cameron Norrie played his toughest match of the clay court season as he edged past in-form Sebastian Baez in 2 hours and 42 minutes to reach the last four in Lyon. Both players showcased their baseline return games early in the match as they broke each other’s serves in the opening couple of games as Baez would provide Norrie with the ultimate test throughout the match.
However Norrie stood up to that test in the opening set as he created the more opportunities and continued to use his variety to create openings. Too many unforced errors from Baez in the fifth game saw Norrie capitalise and break to love for 3-2. The Argentinian continued to be gritty and resilient but in the end the Brit held on and served out the opening set 6-4.
Norrie continued his confidence on serve in the second set with Baez starting to be more tentative as the match went on. The turning point was the seventh game as Baez faced two more break points from Norrie’s clinical returning. But the world number 38 held on and he would break for the second set in the tenth game with some effective point construction.
The Brit didn’t panic though as he looked for the breakthrough in the opening game of the deciding set and took his break point opportunity to earn his reward. Baez looked to do what he did all match and show character to dig out a break. However Norrie’s bold play on big points ensured he held for 2-0. It looked like that Norrie was heading towards a comfortable victory as he created two match points in the ninth game.
Another twist ensued though as Norrie failed to break and convert his match point on serve. This allowed Baez to take advantage of the Brit’s nerves and break back for 5-5. In the end though Norrie broke straight back and served out the match for an epic two hour and 45 minute as well as a place in the semi-finals.
Cameron Norrie  v Holger Rune H2H & Match Fundamentals
Rune is another player who is benefiting from the clay-court season having won the Munich title a few weeks ago. The young Dane is not afraid of the big occasion having beaten Alexander Zverev on his run to the title and Rune will be chasing a second title in France this week.
Norrie will have to use his experience and patience to get past Rune’s all round game and talented shot-making. The Brit will look to make the match as long as possible with Rune showing physical frailty in the past and Norrie will look to do the same here. A win here would send a big statement of intent heading into Roland Garros next week.
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