Gabriel Diallo pumps his fist.

Photo : Tyler Anderson

Gabriel Diallo arrived at the ATP Challenger event in Winnipeg on the heels of his first-ever match win on the ATP Tour in Toronto last week. While he did not manage to back it up in singles, the young Canadian is having a strong run in the Manitoba capital in doubles, finding himself in the title match.

In a quarter-final pitting two Canadians against each other, Diallo and his Swiss partner Leandro Riedi beat Kelsey Stevenson and Brit Billy Harris 6-2, 6-4. Diallo and Riedi then got a free pass to the final when Mattia Bellucci and his fellow Italian Luca Nardi announced they would withdraw from the semis.

The first doubles match of the day was a catch-up round of sixteen match between two all-Canadian pairs: Juan Carlos Aguilar and Taha Baadi against Cleeve Harper and Brayden Schnur. It was Aguilar and Baadi winning in straight sets 6-3, 6-4 to move on to the quarter-finals later in the day, where they scored a second win against Thai-Son Kwiatowski and Chris Rodesch, this time a comeback 1-6, 6-2, [10-3] to reach the final four.

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Top seeds Andrew Harris and Christian Harrison advanced in straight sets 7-6(2), 6-2 to round out the doubles semifinal lineup.

The semifinals will take place on Friday, with the finals being contested on Saturday.

Brits lead singles

Coming into quarter-final Friday at the ATP Winnipeg National Bank Challenger, it was the Brits stealing the spotlight with a chance to claim three of the four semifinal spots.

Great Britain was guaranteed at least one semifinalist with No. 4 seed Liam Broady meeting countryman Billy Harris in the first match of the day. The fourth seed broke serve four times and won 60 per cent of his second serve return points for a 7-6(5), 6-4 win.

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Ryan Penniston had no trouble with Darian King of Barbados, needing just over an hour for a 6-0, 6-1 victory.

But top seed Jack Draper, who reached the quarter-final of the National Bank Open on the main tour in Canada last year, could not complete the big day for the Brits as he was upset by France’s Arthur Cazaux in straight sets 6-3, 6-3.

Riedi also advanced to the final four of the singles, defeating Bellucci in three sets. Bellucci had beaten Diallo in the second round.