PARIS – United States’ tennis player Jack Sock ended on Saturday France’s Julien Benneteau’s fairy-tale run at the Paris Masters with a 7-5, 6-2 win in the semifinals.
In his first Masters final, Sock needs to win over Serbian Filip Krajinovic to grab the last berth in the ATP Finals eight-man, season-ending tournament.
“I was able to go out today and play my game, swing big, kind of like I always do, and play some good tennis and get through,” Sock said. “Tomorrow is just a good opportunity for me to go out and try to compartmentalize all the things that would come with winning tomorrow and just go out and play my tennis again.”
Despite great fan support in his home country, Benneteau struggled with his serve, committing five double faults and winning just eight of 25 second-serve points.
The 35-year-old Benneteau seized on two out of five break points, while Sock converted five break points; a little more than half the number he created (56 percent).
Benneteau’s run in the tournament came to an end after downing two Top 10 players back-to-back in the same tournament for the first time in his career.
The Frenchman prevailed over Belgian David Goffin, No. 10 in the world, and Croatian Marin Cilic, the world’s No. 5, in the previous two rounds.
“What I’m most proud of is that I was able to play four matches in a row at a very high level,” Benneteau said. “The first match was extremely good. I was able to beat Jo-Wilfried (Tsonga), (David) Goffin, and (Marin) Cilic one after the other. And it was great to do that here in Paris.”
After Krajinovic’s win over American John Isner in the other semifinal match, Sock is the only player who stands between Pablo Carreño Busta of Spain and the last spot in the ATP Finals.