Campinas: India's Sumit Nagal sailed into the semifinals of the ATP Challenger Campinas with a hard-fought win over Argentina's Francisco Cer-undolo here. Nagal, placed at a career-best 135 right now, knocked out 13th seed Cerundolo 7-6 7-5 to book his second last-four appearance in two weeks.
Nagal had received a bye in the first round and then in the second round his opponent Gastao Elias of Portugal retired mid way in the first set. In the round of 16, the Indian beat Brazilian Orlando Luz 7-5 6-3.The sixth seed Indian will now face Juan Pablo Ficovich of Argentina in the final.
Earlier this week, Nagal won his second title on the ATP Challenger Tour. He notched up a straight-set win over Argentina's Facundo Bognis to claim the Buenos Aires ATP Challenger clay court event.
Nagal had won the ATP Challenger Buenos Aires last week and continued his form into this week as he beat Cerundolo 7-6 (2), 7-5 to set up a semi-final meet with another Argentinian Juan Ficovich. With the win, Nagal now has the highest number of semi-final appearances on the ATP Challenger Tour this year. At the back of this win, Nagal also moved to the world No.129 spot in the ATP live rankings. After winning the Challenger title in Argentina last week, Nagal had moved to career-best ranking of 135.
Nagal has defeated Cerundolo just last week on his way to the title in Buenos Aires at the same stage but that win had come in three sets. In Brazil, it was a more straight forward win for the Indian.
Nagal had moved into the second round of the tournament after his opponent Portuguese Gastao Elias retired while the Indian was leading 4-1 in the first set.