MONTE CARLO, APRIL 16 – Fourth seed David Ferrer ended the upset run of Jurgen Melzer 6-3, 6-2 to reach the final of the Monte Carlo Masters on Saturday.
The scrambling Spaniard set up half of a potential all-Spanish final as he awaits an opponent from six-time winner Rafael Nadal and the surprisingly on form Andy Murray, seeded third.
That match was delayed after an announcement was made to the crowd that Murray had injured his elbow during a practise session and was receiving treatment.
The Scot and the Spanish world number one came to the court late but began in a regular fashion.
Ferrer doused cold water on Melzer’s dream run after the Austrian had put out Roger Federer in the quarter-finals.
"Maybe the key was in my serve," said the winner. "I played very consistent and didn’t make mistakes. I was very regular and very focused all the match. I’m very pleased to be in the finals of a Masters 1000."
Ferrer was playing a Monte Carlo semi-final for the second straight year. Melzer, seventh on the ATP, was the first Austrian to reach the semis here since Thomas Muster won the title 15 years ago.
Melzer had won his last two meetings with Ferrer, including at Roland Garros on clay.
"I think out of the first five games, I should have won all five of them," said Melzer. "You could see in the beginning he didn’t feel comfortable at all.
"The longer the match went on, the more comfortable he felt and the discomfort I felt," said the Austrian who said the neck pain which forced him off court for treatment against Federer was not a problem on Saturday.
"If you’re in the semifinals, you want to win no matter who you beat the day before."
The Austrian began strongly with a break but lost his way as Ferrer’s steady game paid dividends to frustrate his opponent. Melzer lost the first set in 38 minutes and went down two breaks in the second.
He saved a match point before Ferrer advanced on his second chance from a Melzer unforced error.