The Japanese Kei Nishikori, former world number four, will be cited in the semifinals of the ATP 500 Tournament in Washington with the American Mackenzie McDonald, number 107, while the Italian Jannik Sinner will rival another local, Jenson Brooksby.
Nishikori advanced to the semifinals on Friday by beating South African Lloyd Harris, the fourteenth seed, 6-3, 7-5.
The Italian Sinner, 19 years old, fifth seeded, qualified by eliminating the American Steve Johnson 6-4, 6-2.
Back where he belongs 🙌@keinishikori reaches his first semifinal since 2019 (Barcelona) with a 6-3 7-5 victory over Harris! 😃
– Tennis TV (@TennisTV) August 7, 2021
His rival, a year older, will be the American Brooksby, 20, the revelation of the tournament by winning 6-1 and 6-2 against Australian John Millman, eleventh seeded.
Nishikori, who was already champion in Washington in 2015, will meet in the semifinals with the American Mackenzie McDonald, number 107.
The Japanese, number 67 in the world, beat 10 aces by Harris, the executioner of Spanish Rafael Nadal, the first seed, in the third round, and broke serve four times in 14 opportunities to seal the victory.
The 31-year-old comfortably dominated the first set, but faced much more resistance when Harris raised his level in the second set.
The top-ranked South African, who claimed his biggest win over Nadal yesterday, regularly relied on his great first serve to keep Nishikori in full concentration until he finally scored the decisive goals.
Nishikori is competing for his thirteenth ATP Tour trophy and his first since Brisbane in 2019.
It will be the first meeting at the Tour level for Nishikori and McDonald, who in the quarterfinal match won 6-3 and 6-2 against his compatriot Denis Kudla, the executioner of Spanish Feliciano López, in the first round.
The pair previously met at an ATP Challenger Tour event in 2018 with Nishikori comfortably winning against McDonald, who has always admired the game of Japanese tennis.
The 26-year-old McDonald reached his second Tour semi-final after defeating Kudla in one hour and 14 minutes.
The Italian Sinner, fifth seed and number 24 in the world, advanced after leaving the American Steve Johnson on the road 6-4 and 6-2.
His 11th-seeded rival Brooksby is number 130.