(June 24, 2016) Steve Johnson of the USA will face Uruguay’s Pablo Cuevas in the Aegon Open Nottingham final after defeating Italian No. 7 seed Andreas Seppi 6-4, 6-4 on a rain-interrupted day that started with Johnson completing a quarter-final win over top seed Kevin Anderson.
No. 6 seed Johnson – who overcame World No. 10 Richard Gasquet on his way to the quarterfinals at the Aegon Championships at Queen’s Club last week – had to win two matches on Friday due to darkness suspending the match with Anderson at 7-6(6), 5-7, 3-4 on Thursday night.
Johnson said: “To come out today and finish the match from yesterday, get the win over Kevin and then come out against Andreas and have a rain delay wasn’t the easiest thing in the world. Fortunately, I came out with good starts in both and was able to get back in the swing of things.”
In his only other ATP World Tour final, Johnson lost out to Spaniard David Ferrer after being one set up at the Erste Bank Open in Vienna last October.
Ahead of facing World No. 25 Cuevas, Johnson added: “I’m going to feel more comfortable. I’m definitely feeling confident, but Pablo’s played an outstanding tournament as well. It’s hopefully going to be a great match and I’m going to be a bit more comfortable in my second final than I was in my first.”
Earlier in the day, Cuevas also reached his first ATP World Tour final on grass after he came from a set down to beat Gilles Muller 3-6, 7-6(3), 6-4 in two hours and two minutes.
It is the third time in the tournament that Cuevas has played a three-set match, having come from a set down against Brit Dan Evans and saving a match point against Marcos Baghdatis in previous rounds.
Cuevas, who has won five career ATP World Tour singles titles including back-to-back crowns on clay earlier this year, said: “I’m so happy to reach my first final on grass. I have played every match with more confidence and today I beat an excellent player on grass. Hopefully tomorrow I will enjoy it too.
Having won only two matches on grass before this week, the 30-year-old added: “I always play more comfortably on clay. I was born playing on clay but this is my first time playing with confidence on grass. Now, having played four matches here, the feeling is good.”
Both men hope to reach milestones on Saturday – Johnson hopes to win his first ATP World Tour title, while Cuevas wants to take home his first grass court trophy.
From the LTA