Men’s Semi-finals Set: Ferrer vs. Benneteau, Raonic vs. Federer

David Ferrer makes his 15th ATP World Tour Masters 1000 semi-final appearance.
Julien Benneteau makes his Cincinnati semi-final debut today at the W&S Open.
Big serving Canadian Milos Raonic takes on Roger Federer in his third Masters 1000 semi-final.
Roger Federer is one step closer to claiming his 6th W&S Open title.

The men’s semi-finals are set at the 2014 Western & Southern Open with No.6 seed David Ferrer taking on Frenchman Julien Benneteau, and young gun Milos Raonic facing off with five-time champion Roger Federer.

In the first semi-final of the day, it’s a battle of the 32-year-olds. Coming off a tough three set win over fellow countryman Tommy Robredo, Spaniard Ferrer meets Benneteau for the 10th time in their careers.

It was no easy road to the semis for Ferrer. He battled off Philipp Kohlschreiber in his opening round, saving two match points and defeating him in three tiebreak sets. He then met Mikhail Youzhny, who dismantled last week’s Toronto champion Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the first round. After falling behind 2-5 in the first set, Ferrer won 11 straight games to clinch the win 7-5, 6-0.

This is the Spaniard’s 15th ATP World Tour Masters 1000 semi-final appearance, and third of the year.  He leads Benneteau 5-4 in their head-to-head, recording the most recent win in Valencia in last October.

Benneteau is through to his first Masters 1000 semi-final, following a three set win over World No.4 Stan Wawrinka. The victory improved his career record against Top 10 players to 14-43, and 2-2 in 2014. The Frenchman’s road to the semis also proved difficult.

In his opening round, Benneteau faced lucky loser Blaz Rola, defeating the former Ohio State Buckeye in a third set tiebreak. In the round of 16, he beat young gun Jerzy Janowicz, who was coming off an impressive win over No.7 seed Grigor Dimitrov, in straight sets.

Benneteau is looking to make his 10th ATP final. In 242 tournament-level events, he has not recorded one title win.

On the bottom half of the draw, big serving Raonic takes on former World No.1 Federer.

The Canadian is through to his third Masters 1000 semi-final of his career following a 57 minute 6-1, 6-0 win over Italian Fabio Fognini.

The 23-year-old breezed through his opening round opponent, American wild card Robby Ginepri, defeating him 6-2, 6-2. His round of 16 matchup with Steve Johnson, proved more of a challenge. After losing the first set in a tiebreak, Raonic rallied to clinch the win 6-7(7), 6-3, 7-6(4).

Federer dominates their head-to-head 5-0, with their most recent meeting coming at Wimbledon earlier this year.

He advanced to his 52nd ATP semi-final with an impressive 6-3, 7-5 win over Andy Murray Friday night. In the pair’s 22nd meeting, Federer broke the Brit five times and came back from being down 1-4 in the second set, winning six of the last seven games to clinch the win.

Federer battled through two three set matches en route to the semi-finals, defeating Canadian Vasek Pospisil in his opening round to became the first player to reach 300 Masters 1000 wins. On Thursday night, Federer met athletic Frenchman Gael Monfils, clinching the win 6-4, 4-6, 6-3.

In each previous occasion when Federer reached the semis in Cincinnati, he has gone on to win the title.

Ferrer versus Benneteau will be second on Center Court during the day session, and Raonic versus Federer will be second on during the night session.