Daniil Medvedev has added Jo-Wilfried Tsonga as his third big-name victim on his way to a maiden Brisbane International final on Saturday night.
Medvedev fended off two set points in an opening set tie-break before running away with a 7-6(6) 6-2 triumph against the former world No.5.
It came after a three-set win over 2016 champion Milos Raonic and two-time champion Andy Murray in his previous two rounds.
Daniil Medvedev continues his strong #BrisbaneTennis run 🏃🏼♂️
The rising Russian star saves two SPs in the first and then sails through set two, 7-6(6) 6-2 over Jo-Wilfried Tsonga
He’ll face Kei Nishikori in Sunday’s final pic.twitter.com/jWFea9zbOb
— #BrisbaneTennis (@BrisbaneTennis) January 5, 2019
The 22-year-old lost just 10 points on serve all match – at one stage winning 17 straight points on his delivery.
But the world No.16 almost let the first set slip as Tsonga twice rallied from 0-40 down to hold serve and then shoot to a 4-1 lead in the tiebreaker.
That became 6-4 before Medvedev won the next four points to claim the set.
Tsonga, on the comeback from knee surgery that saw him miss seven months of last year’s tour, couldn’t touch the Russian in the second set as the match wrapped up in 84 minutes.
Medvedev’s finals appearances builds again on his breakout 2018 season, in which he won more matches on hard courts (38) than any other man on tour.
Second seed Nishikori was equally impressive in his 6-2 6-2 defeat of Jeremy Chardy earlier in the day.
The pair having split their two previous career meetings one-all, while Nishikori is chasing his first title in nearly three years.
“I was really nervous and he started amazing,” Medvedev said. “I didn’t do anything wrong. I managed to come back and had more opportunities.
“It was a really close match and many players are coming back this year, Jo is one of them, so I wish him well this season.
“It’s a really great tournament for me, starting against Murray in my first match of the season.”
Tickets are still available via Ticketek to Sunday’s blockbuster finals session with the men’s singles, women’s singles and men’s doubles titles on the line. Category B tickets are now just $99 for adults, $80 for children 16 and under.