TORONTO (AFP) - Jo-Wilfried Tsonga dealt the new tennis generation a blow with a 6-4, 6-3 defeat of Grigor Dimitrov on Saturday at the Toronto Masters to reach his first final in Canada.
The 29-year-old Frenchman will face off for his second Masters 1000 shield on Sunday when he plays the winner from two-time Canadian champion Roger Federer and Spain's Feliciano Lopez.
Tsonga claimed a Masters win at Paris Bercy in 2008, but lost in Paris and London in two other finals to Federer.
Tsonga spent fewer than 90 minutes in dispatching 23-year-old Bulgarian Dimitrov, the youngest member of the ATP Tour's top 10 who stands eighth in the world and is tipped as one of the stars of the future.
The Frenchman took victory on his second match point after a tie in which he struck seven aces, saved all four break points he faced and fired 22 winners as he broke his opponent three times.
Tsonga needed to work for three-quarters of an hour to win the opening set against a player he beat three times in 2011.
Tsonga earned a beak for 5-4 in the opener and claimed the set after a marathon final game in which he saved four break points - an ace and three service winners - before taking the set 6-4 with another powerful serve.
In the second set, the Frenchman got on top 2-1 and then broke again in the final game to post his 29th win of the season against 13 losses.
Tsonga reached the semis after upsetting world number one Novak Djokovic and 2013 Wimbledon champion Andy Murray back-to-back in the two previous rounds.
He is bidding for his 11th career trophy.
He has a 5-11 career record against Federer and is 5-0 over Lopez.