- …Is beating the other Armada: That’s right, no. 34 -ranked Marcel Granollers is a SF contender in Valencia. Perhaps it was the pressure of defending his finalist points from last year, but Granollers ground out wins over Cilic and Monfils. Given his doubles background, Granollers is extremely proficient at the net, which will prove a complicated test for JMDP. Del Potro, following his straight set 6-2 7-5 victory over Querrey, will face Granollers for a spot in the final.
- Valencia doesn’t have Hawk Eye: During the Granollers-Monfils QF, a critical line call went against Monfils, costing him a break in the 1st set. He was unusually perturbed by this and proceeded to complain at length in French. Umpire Mohamed Lahyani stepped in with a long, impassioned plea and nuggets of golden advice for Monfils during the changeover:
“It is just one call. You should concentrate. You’re too good, Gael! I know that. You never get upset about things like this before. I never saw you like this for one call.” —Dr. Mo comes to the rescue for Monfils
- In the other half of the draw Pico pulled off a minor upset over Juan Carlos Ferrero, defeating him 6-3 6-3. This is a very impressive result for the fellow Tandilese, as he overcame a tough draw to secure his first SF showing in 2011. Pico will face defending champion Ferru in the SF.
Summary: There are now two Argentines and two Spaniards left in the Valencia draw. Valencia is looking like a preview of the Davis Cup showdown in December. Ideally, at least one Argentine and one Spaniard will pull through to meet in the Valencia final.