Somdev Devvarman will lock horns with Croatia’s third seed Marin Cilic in the summit clash of the Chennai Open as he reached his maiden ATP tour event final after Germany’s fifth seed Rainer Schuettler pulled out from the semifinal due to a wrist injury.
Cilic stormed into the final after defeating eighth seed Spaniard Marcel Granollers 6-4 6-3 in his semifinal match of the USD 450,000 hard court tournament.
Somdev is first Indian player to reach the final of the Chennai Open,now into its 14th edition.
India’s doubles ace Leander Paes had reached the semifinals of Chennai Open in 1998.
Somdev is also the only second Indian player in recent times to make the final of an ATP Tour event.
Prakash Amritraj had reached the final of Hall of Fame Tennis championship in Newport,United States,in July,2008 when he lost to Fabrice Santoro.
Somdev made full use of his wild card,upsetting players like Croatia’s world number 25 Ivo Karlovic and former world number one Carlos Moya en route to the semifinal.
The new Indian tennis sensation knows that it would be tough to bring home the title.
“Tomorrow is going to be very tough. I have my work cut out. Cilic is really playing very good,” he said after getting the walkover.
Somdev was delighted to make the final but was disappointed to miss the chance to play against Schuettler.
“It is obviously disappointing. Specially for the crowd. I knew it’s going to be tough against Schuettler. He is a seasoned pro. I had thought of playing an attacking game but I did not get the chance,” he said.
Schuettler was also disappointed on leaving the tournament mid-way.
“During yesterday’s doubles match I started feeling pain in my left wrist. As I warmed up for the semifinal I wasn’t able to hit a double handed backhanded,I felt a strong pain. I would only be able to slice and I’m also afraid that the injury would get worse. I had the same a few years ago but it wasn’t as bad as now,” the German ace said.
“I feel sorry for the crowd and the tournament. It is a very disappointing moment for me.”
Schuetller was also worried about his campaign in the Australian Open.
“I also have to pull out of Sydney. I will now fly to Melbourne and see if I can be ready in time for the Australian Open,” he said.
The German player became the second player to pull out from the event after Russian top seed Nikolay Davydenko,who had to leave the event due to a heel injury ahead of his second round match,earlier.