SPORTS

Verdasco beats Monfils to reach semifinals in Dubai

  • Fernando Verdasco of Spain returns the ball to Gael Monfils of France during a quarter final match of the Dubai Tennis Championships, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Thursday, March 2, 2017. (AP Photo/Kamran Jebreili)

    Fernando Verdasco of Spain returns the ball to Gael Monfils of France during a quarter final match of the Dubai Tennis Championships, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Thursday, March 2, 2017. (AP Photo/Kamran Jebreili)  (The Associated Press)

  • Gael Monfils of France serves the ball to Fernando Verdasco of Spain during a quarter final match of the Dubai Tennis Championships, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Thursday, March 2, 2017. (AP Photo/Kamran Jebreili)

    Gael Monfils of France serves the ball to Fernando Verdasco of Spain during a quarter final match of the Dubai Tennis Championships, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Thursday, March 2, 2017. (AP Photo/Kamran Jebreili)  (The Associated Press)

  • Fernando Verdasco of Spain celebrates after he beats Gael Monfils of France during a quarter final match of the Dubai Tennis Championships, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Thursday, March 2, 2017. (AP Photo/Kamran Jebreili)

    Fernando Verdasco of Spain celebrates after he beats Gael Monfils of France during a quarter final match of the Dubai Tennis Championships, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Thursday, March 2, 2017. (AP Photo/Kamran Jebreili)  (The Associated Press)

Fernando Verdasco advanced to the semifinals at the Dubai Tennis Championships by beating fourth-seeded Gael Monfils 6-3, 7-5 Thursday.

The 35th-ranked Verdasco, one of five unseeded players in the quarterfinals, had lost all three of his previous matches against Monfils, the last coming in 2013.

"I tried to be aggressive but not make too many unforced errors," Verdasco said. "He's one of the best defenders in the game. I came out and just wanted to play my game."

Verdasco served for the match at 5-4 in the second set but had his serve broken at love. He won the next two games to secure a semifinal berth.

Verdasco will next play Robin Haase, who defeated Dami Dzumhur 6-2, 4-6, 6-4.