Paire faces qualifier Gojowczyk in Moselle Open final
METZ, France (AP) — Benoit Paire reached his first final of the year at the Moselle Open on Saturday, defeating Nikoloz Basilashvili of Georgia 6-1, 7-6 (5).
The seventh-seeded Frenchman, who had lost his four previous semifinals this year, faces German qualifier Peter Gojowczyk on Sunday.
Paire hit 17 aces and needed just one hour to advance while 95th-ranked Gojowczyk spent less than 30 minutes on the indoor court. Gojowczyk was up 6-3, 1-0 against Mischa Zverev when the fifth-seeded German retired.
According to the ATP, the last qualifier to win a title on the main tour is Frenchman Nicolas Mahut, at ’s-Hertogenbosch in 2015.
Paire, who defeated second-seeded David Goffin in the previous round after saving a match point, dropped just five points on his first serve and fended off all four break points he faced. The Frenchman had lost all eight semifinals he had played since October 2015 and will chase a second ATP title after claiming his maiden trophy in Bastad two years ago.