SAINT PETERSBURG (AFP) - US Open champion Stan Wawrinka and Alexander Zverev of Germany cruised into the Saint Petersburg Open final on Saturday (Sept 24) beating Roberto Bautista Agut of Spain and the Czech Thomas Berdych respectively.
Swiss top seed Wawrinka won his first ever meeting with the fourth seeded Bautista Agut 7-6 (10/8), 6-2 in one hour 50 minutes to set up a clash with the German teenager in the final.
The world number three produced a catalogue of 31 unforced errors but nevertheless took the opening set in a tiebreak after one hour 15 minutes on court.
In the second Wawrinka moved up a gear to race through the set into the final, courtesy of service breaks in the first and seventh games.
"I always try to win any match I'm playing," Wawrinka said.
"I have enjoyed the week here so far and making the final is a very positive sign for me.
"Today, it was a tough match and I'm happy with the way I was fighting and found solutions."
Meanwhile, the 19-year-old fifth seeded Zverev, who is seeking his maiden ATP title here, beat third seed Berdych 6-4, 6-4 in one hour 20 minutes.
Berdych, currently ninth in the race to the London ATP Finals - which features the year's top eight players - looked slightly rusty from the start and Zverev took the opening set in 35 minutes with a break in the fifth game.
The second set was almost a carbon copy of the first as Zverev broke early again and kept his lead through to close out his first ever win over Berdych in their fifth head-to-head meeting.
"Every single match with Thomas (Berdych) was a really hard clash including today's meeting," Zverev said.
"I'm really happy I finally managed to beat him. I enjoy the city and the tennis that I play here. Hopefully, it will be the same in the final."