Spaniard Carlos Alcaraz, world number 2 and defending champion, qualified for the semi-finals of the ATP 500 tournament on clay in Barcelona by beating his compatriot Alejandro Davidovich Fokina 7-6 (7/5), 6 on Friday -4.
Saturday, Alcaraz will be opposed to the Briton Daniel Evans (26th in the world), who beat in the evening the Argentinian Francisco Cerundolo (32nd) 2-6, 7-5, 6-3.
Carlos Alcaraz, whose preparation was disrupted by hand and back injuries which prevented him from participating in the last Monte-Carlo tournament, had to fight hard to get rid of a very catchy Fokina (38th in the world) .
The 19-year-old Spanish prodigy broke open to lead 3-0 but Fokina equalized at 3-3 before seeing his young opponent regain control. However Alcaraz failed to finish on his serve at 5-4 and Fokina was even two points away from winning the tie-break in the first set.
The US Open winner then saved six break points in the third game of the second set and then earned the break to lead 3-1. Fokina (23) then took over the service of his opponent, but Alcaraz made a final break in the last game to win the set and the match.
Earlier in the afternoon, the Greek Stefanos Tsitsipas (5th) had much more easily got rid of the Australian Alex de Minaur (19th) 6-4, 6-2.
Seeded N.2, Tsitsipas, finalist in January of the Australian Open, will be opposed in the semi-finals to the Italian Lorenzo Musetti (20th), winner by default of his opponent and compatriot Jannik Sinner (8th), sick.
Sinner beat Musetti last week in the quarter-finals in Monte Carlo.