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Young, Raonic, Gasquet in Washington semis

August 2, 2014

WASHINGTON (AP) — Donald Young reached his first ATP semifinal in three years by beating seventh-seeded Kevin Anderson 3-6, 7-6 (3), 6-2 on Friday at the Citi Open.

His semifinal opponent on Saturday will be No. 2 Milos Raonic, who ended the surprising run of unheralded American Steve Johnson, winning 7-6 (2), 6-2.

Johnson beat the tour’s top two servers, John Isner and Ivo Karlovic, in his previous two matches, but he couldn’t be the man who ranks third, Raonic, failing to even earn one break point.

No. 6-seeded Richard Gasquet of France reached the semifinals by beating No. 4 Kei Nishikori of Japan 6-1, 6-4. Gasquet faced only one break point, in the final game, and saved it when Nishikori sailed a return long.

Next for Gasquet will be No. 10 Santiago Giraldo of Colombia or No. 13 Vasek Pospisil of Canada, whose quarterfinal was suspended because of rain after only two points were played in the third set Friday. They will play that final set on Saturday, with the winner returning to the court hours later to face Gasquet.

In women’s action, two-time major champion Svetlana Kuznetsova moved into the semifinals when Vania King withdrew from the tournament with a right hip injury.

King also pulled out of next week’s tournament in Montreal but doesn’t think the injury will prevent her from entering the U.S. Open, which begins Aug. 25.

“I don’t think it’s serious. I don’t need a couple months off. I don’t need surgery,” King said. “I’m going to take off a couple days and see how it feels and then go from there.”

In Saturday’s semifinals, the No. 6-seeded Kuznetsova will face No. 2 Ekaterina Makarova, who beat No. 5 Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 7-6 (3), 6-3. The other women’s semifinal is Marina Erakovic of New Zealand against Kurumi Nara of Japan.

Erakovic beat Bojana Jovanovski 6-4, 6-4, and Nara defeated Kristina Mladenovic 6-3, 6-1.

Young, ranked 73rd, hadn’t made it this far at a tournament since October 2011, when he was the Thailand Open runner-up.

“Losing’s not good, and I was doing a lot of that,” Young said. “I didn’t want to do that anymore. I wanted to try something else.”

He hasn’t done that a whole lot, despite having been pegged for greatness as a teenager. Now 25, Young joked that maybe he’s finally at the right age.

“It’s still a work in progress. I still slip back every now and then. But more so than not, I’m being a lot more positive,” said Young, who is based in Atlanta. “I’ve tried being negative. It doesn’t work. I’ve had a lot of low times, but positive is working well.”

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