South African Raven Klaasen is through to the semi-finals of the Australian Open in Melbourne, writes Mark Etheridge.
Playing with partner Eric Butorac, Klaasen notched up a three-set victory against the UK/Philippines combination of Dominic Inglot and Treat Huey on Tuesday.
The duo needed a total of 2hr 08min before winning 6-7 (3) 7-6 (6) 6-4.
It was touch and go as to whether the unseeded Klaasen and Butorac would book their place in the semi as their opponents led 4-3 in the final set but astoundingly let four break points go a-begging.
As far as the aces stakes went, Klaasen and Butorac had nine, two less than Huey and Inglot but in terms of service statistics were on top with a 74% first service success compared to 62%.
A measure of the close competition was that they had just one more winner (51-50) and one more unforced error (16-15).
Klaasen and Butorac will now face either unseeded Aussies Alex Bolt and Andrew Whittington or eighth seeds Daniel Nestor (Canada) and Nenad Zimonjic (Serbia) for a place in the final.
Highest seeded combo left in the competition are fifth seeds Leander Paes and Radek Stepanek of India and Czech Republic respectively.
To date this year Klaasen and Butorac reached the Last 16 at the Brisbane International and then the sem-finals of the Auckland International last week.