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Kucera, Grosjean Advance in Russia

October 25, 2002

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ST. PETERSBURG, Russia (AP) _ Slovakia’s Karol Kucera overcame a loss in the first set and beat seventh-seeded Gaston Gaudio 2-6, 6-4, 6-3 Friday to advance to the semifinals of the St. Petersburg Open.

Kucera, who beat top-seeded Andre Agassi in the second round, will face Sebastien Grosjean, a 4-6, 6-3, 6-2 winner over Dominik Hrbaty.

Gauidio, a two-time winner this year, broke Kucera twice in the first set.

In the second set, the players traded breaks in the first four games before Kucera moved out to a 4-2 lead and evened the match.

Kucera charged to a 5-2 lead in the third set and served for the match at love.

Grosjean, ranked No. 21 in the ATP Champions Race, broke Hrbaty in the ninth game of the second set to force a decisive third set.

After trading breaks in the first two games in the third set, Grosjean won four straight games for a 5-1 lead and served for the match at love in the eighth game of the set.

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