Gasquet fights back to set up final with Mathieu


Richard Gasquet is one win away from retaining the Open Sud de France title after coming from behind to beat Dustin Brown in the semi-finals on Saturday.

The top seed needed to dig deep to produce an excellent fightback, eventually prevailing 1-6 6-4 6-3.

His triumph sees him become the eighth active player to reach 25 ATP tour-level finals, but it looked for a long time as if he would suffer defeat to his German opponent

Brown claimed nine of the first 10 games in Montpellier to hold a 3-0 lead in the second set after easily winning the first.

But the momentum quickly shifted in favour of Gasquet, with Brown only winning four more games in the match as the three-time grand slam finalist kept his hopes of winning the trophy for the third time in four years alive.

"I'm happy to fight a lot and I am happy to come back here to the final," said Gasquet. "It was a great match for me to win."

He will face fellow Frenchman Paul-Henri Mathieu, who also overcame a German foe in the form of Alexander Zverev.

Mathieu got the better of the teenager in an exciting encounter, winning 7-6 (13-11) 7-5.

Zverev came from 3-0 down in the first set to force a tie-break, but spurned three chances to take the opener in a thrilling shootout that featured 24 points.

Having dropped serve again in the second set, Zverev saved match point and broke back to level at 5-5.

However, Mathieu immediately capitalised on another poor service game and then held firm to set up a meeting with his compatriot.

Mathieu, who will be aiming to recapture the championship he won back in 2002, said: "I'm very happy with the win. It's a great satisfaction to be in a final again. The last was in Kitzbuhel.

"To make another one in a couple of months is great for my confidence. Hopefully I will win."