August 10, 2013 - 4:12 PM
MONTREAL - Milos Raonic defeated fellow Canadian Vasek Pospisil 6-4, 1-6, 7-6 (4) on Saturday to reach the final of the US$3.49 million Rogers Cup.
In Sunday's final, Canada's top-ranked player will face the winner of the second semifinal later Saturday between two-time defending champion and top seed Novak Djokovic and fourth-seeded Rafael Nadal.
Pospisil, in his best ATP Tour showing, earned $128,960 for reaching the semis.
The 11th-seeded Raonic will crack the top-10 in the next world rankings after reaching the final of a Masters series event.
The last Canadian to win the event was Robert Bedard, who took the last of his three titles in 1958.
The centre court crowd had been aroar for Canadian players all week, but with two playing each other, the partisan clapping and chanting was gone.
And there was little to get excited about in the first set, as Raonic had the only service break for a 3-2 lead just after Pospisil let two break points get away.
It all went Pospisil's way in the second set, as he broke twice for 2-0 and 5-1 leads against a suddenly listless Raonic. The Vernon, B.C., native punctuated set point with a leaping fist pump.
Raonic took a restroom break after the set and came back with a strong service game and the two held service through to the tiebreaker.
Pospisil, coming off a win last week in Vancouver, came into the Rogers Cup ranked 71st in the world but will jump well into the top 50.
His path to the semis included his first win over a top-20 player (John Isner) and his first over a top-10 (Tomas Berdych).
They were the first Canadians to reach the semifinals of the tournament — once called the Canadian Open — since Mike Belkin of Montreal lost to American Cliff Richey.
The last time two Canadians were in the semifinals of an ATP Tour event was in 1990 at Rio de Janeiro, where Andrew Sznajder lost in the final and Martin Wostenholme was beaten in the semis.
News from © The Canadian Press , 2013