Champ Berrettini into Queen's semi-final

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Matteo Berrettini is back into the Queen's Club semi-finals and still hasn't lost since his return to competitive play after three months out with a hand injury.

The second-seeded Italian beat Tommy Paul 6-4 6-2 on Friday and will play Botic van de Zandschulp of the Netherlands for a place in the final at the prestigious pre-Wimbledon grass-court tournament.

Berrettini's first tournament back after injury was last week on grass in Stuttgart, where he beat Andy Murray in the final on Sunday.

He is the man to beat this week, too, in his defence of the title he won in 2021 for the loss of just one set all week.

He then followed up that win by reaching the Wimbledon final, losing to Novak Djokovic after taking the first set.

Having struggled against lucky loser Denis Kudla in a second-round match that went three sets, Berrettini was back to something close to his best against Paul, who had defeated sixth-seeded Denis Shapovalov and Stan Wawrinka to get to the quarter-finals.

Berrettini sealed victory with an ace down the middle and relied on his big serve, winning 82% of points on his first delivery.

Van de Zandschulp, who is unseeded and ranked No. 29, beat Spain's Alejandro Davidovich Fokina 6-2 6-4.

The other semi-final will be between Marin Cilic, the two-time champion from Croatia, and Serbia's Filip Krajinovic.

Cilic beat Finnish qualifier Emil Ruusuvuori 7-6 (7-2) 6-4 to continue the excellent form that saw him reach the French Open semi-final while Krajinovic recovered to eliminate the remaining British hope, Ryan Peniston, 4-6 6-3 6-3.

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