SPORT

Soderling to meet Fish

STOCKHOLM Oct. 26. Robin Soderling and Mardy Fish, both chasing their first ATP Tour title, advanced to the final of the Stockholm Open with straight sets victories on Saturday.

Soderling, a 19-year-old Swedish wild card, edged Italian veteran Davide Sanguinetti 7-6 (7-2), 7-6 (5) at a sold out Royal Tennis Hall, while Fish prevented an all-Swedish final by beating Thomas Enqvist 6-4, 7-5.

Fish, 21, has reached three ATP finals but lost all, at Delray Beach, Nottingham and Cincinnati this year.

The fifth-seeded American, the only seed left in the $759,330 event, broke Enqvist once in the first set for 4-3 and then held serve twice, winning the set despite two double-faults in the last game.

After trading breaks early in the second, Enqvist fired eight straight aces past Fish to go up 3-2 and 4-3.

That was only two short of the record 10 consecutive aces Texan Steve Denton had while playing a doubles match on the same centre court in the 1982 Stockholm Open.

"That's something that I've never seen before," Fish said of Enqvist's aces. "He was defintely serving well and I knew that I had to take advantage of the opportunities I had, because I was not going to get that many."

Enqvist, a former three-time Stockholm Open champion playing in his hometown for the 13th straight year, fell behind 40-0 in game 11 after Fish passed him at the net. Facing triple break point, Enqvist double-faulted to give the American the break and a 6-5 edge.

Fish then easily held, winning the match when Enqvist's forehand return sailed long.

Fish had not been broken in the tournament going into the semifinal.

"The serve is the key every time I go on the court," he said. "It's the part of my game to end the points pretty quickly, come to the net, serve well and I've been doing that all tournament. I'm extremely happy with the way I've played my serve games."

Soderling, one of Sweden's most promising players, served powerfully throughout and Sanguinetti never got a break point during the entire match.

The results: Robin Soderling bt Davide Sanguinetti 7-6 (7-2), 7-6 (7-5); Mardy Fish bt Thomas Enqvist 6-4, 7-5.

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