Canada’s Raonic reaches tourney final in Russia
ST. PETERSBURG, Russia — Milos Raonic of Canada beat Roberto Bautista Agut 6-2, 7- 6 (2) Saturday to set up a final against Joao Sousa of Portugal at the St. Petersburg Open.
Raonic, of Thornhill, Ont., hit 19 aces, four of them in the secondset tiebreaker, and held serve throughout the match. He won six straight points to win the tiebreaker and sealed the victory with another ace.
Raonic will be chasing his first ATP title since winning the Washington Open in August 2014. He has yet to drop a set in three matches in St. Petersburg.
In the first semifinal, Sousa upset third-seeded Dominic Thiem of Austria 6- 4, 7- 6 (5).
Thiem won more points than Sousa but his serving was inconsistent, with 11 aces balanced by landing just 46 per cent of his first serves. It was the seventh-seeded Sousa’s first win against Thiem in four meetings.
Sousa has lost his last four ATP finals since winning his only title against Julien Benneteau at the 2013 Malaysian Open.