Gael Monfils of France celebrates defeating Lucas Pouille of France during their Men’s Singles Quarterfinal Match on Day Nine of the 2016 US Open at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 6, 2016 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
By NAN Staff Writer
News Americas, FLUSHING, NY, Fri. Sept. 9, 2016: Caribbean-roots, French-born tennis pro, Gael Monfils, has slammed his way into the semi-final of the U.S. Open after an eight-year wait.
The tenth-seeded Monfils pummelled fellow Frenchman Lucas Pouille 6-4, 6-3, 6-3 Thursday to reach the US Open semis and be one of the last four standing.
Monfils was in control throughout against the match against the 22-year-old 24th-seeded Pouille, who was coming off an epic fifth-set tiebreaker win over 14-time major winner Rafael Nadal. Monfils took charge with seven of his 13 aces in the opening set, gaining the only break he needed in the seventh game.
Monfils will now face the dominant Novak Djokovic, a two-time champion today in only his second Grand Slam tournament semi-final in Flushing Meadows.
“He’s a great champion,” Monfils said of the No. 1 player in the Emirates ATP Rankings. “His consistency, his game, the way he hits the ball clean… It’s very hard to remember a match where he wasn’t hitting the ball clean, maybe one or two a year. It’s amazing.”
It’s now left to be seen whether Djokovic will win again or Monfils will be able to score the biggest upset of his career and book his place in the finals.
Monfils, 30, was born to a Guadeloupe-born father and and a Martinique-born mother.