(REUTERS) - Bulgaria's Grigor Dimitrov upset top seed and defending champion Milos Raonic of Canada at the Brisbane International on Saturday (Jan 7) to set up a title clash against Japan's Kei Nishikori.
Seventh seed Dimitrov saved a set point in the opener on his way to a 7-6 (9-7), 6-2 win over world No. 3 Raonic in 88 minutes in the second semi-final at the Pat Rafter Arena.
World No. 5 Nishikori had an almost identical win against Swiss US Open champion Stan Wawrinka, who went down 7-6 (7-3), 6-3 in the first semi-final of the warmup event for this month's Australian Open.
There was little to separate Dimitrov and 2016 Wimbledon finalist Raonic in the first set, both players making the most of their big serves and not offering a single break-point opportunity.
Dimitrov managed to nose ahead by edging the first set tiebreak 9-7 before racing away in the second with two breaks of serve to seal the match.