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Daniil Medvedev on course to defend Dubai Open title in the desert

Daniil Medvedev cruised through to the semi-finals of the Dubai Open with a straight set 6-2 6-3 win over Alejandro Davidovich Fokina on Thursday.

Medvedev, playing his first tournament since losing to Jannik Sinner in last month's Australian Open final, broke the Spanish world number 24 four times in total and will play France's Ugo Humbert for a place in Sunday's final.

"Alejandro can play very well," reflected Medvedev, as per atptour.com. 

"Sometimes during matches he can have a little down moment and then he goes up. I knew that no matter the score, I needed to go until the last point. The second set at one moment got a bit tighter but I managed to stay there and win some more games and it was enough to win."

Fifth seed Humbert, who knocked Andy Murray out in the second round, saved three match points in the second set before overcoming Poland's Hubert Hurkacz 3-6 7-6 (8) 6-3.

Andrey Rublev faces Alexander Bublik in the other semi-final, with both players progressing after their opponents retired in their respective quarter-finals.

Russia's world number five Rublev was leading Sebastian Korda 6-4 4-3 when the American was forced to withdraw and Kazakhstan's Bublik was up 6-4 4-1 against the Czech Republic's Jiri Lehecka, who also succumbed to injury.

READ MORE: In the twilight of his career, Andy Murray is still holding on to the Olympic dream

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