American Taylor Fritz, who was born in San Diego and attended Torrey Pines High School, will face off against Russian Andrey Rublev in one of Saturday’s semifinal matches at the BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells Tennis Garden.
Fritz, the 20th-ranked player in the world, will be trying to reach his seventh ATP tour final in his battle against the favored Rublev, the world’s seventh-ranked player.
Fritz defeated Serbia’s Miomir Kecmanovic on Friday, 7-6, 3-6, 6-1 in a quarterfinal match. Rublev beat Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria, 7-5, 6-2.
Both men are 24, and have split their previous four matches.
“It’s crazy,” Fritz told reporters Friday. “I mean, especially me and Andrey have so much history playing each other in the juniors so much. We had several meetings in the juniors. He took me out on grass one time. I got him in the finals in Mexico one time. He got me in the finals of the junior masters. We’ve gone back and forth so much.”
Rublev was complimentary in his remarks about Fritz.
“He’s a great player, so talented,” Rublev said. “He has won many good matches. He has an amazing serve; good, strong shots. Especially here on a hard surface the way he plays fits this a lot.”
Saturday’s other men’s semifinal pits Spaniards Rafael Nadal and Carlos Alcaraz. Nadal is ranked fourth, Alcaraz 19th.
Fritz and Rublev will begin their match at 1 p.m., with the other match to follow.
The women’s final will be played Sunday and matches Iga Swiatek of Poland against Greece’s Maria Sakkari, who defeated last year’s winner at Indian Wells, Spaniard Paula Badosa, 6-2, 4-6, 6-1 on Friday.
“I worked my entire life to get to these late stages of the tournaments,” Sakkari said after her win. “I know it looks maybe silly to someone — it’s not like I won the tournament, I’m in the final — but it means a lot to me.”
Ticket information can be found at bnpparibasopen.com/tickets/.