Marseille, France (SportsNetwork.com) - Heavy French crowd favorites Richard Gasquet and reigning champion Jo-Wilfried Tsonga led the charge into the semifinals at the Open 13 indoor hardcourt tennis event.
The nifty top-seeded Gasquet reached the final four at this tournament for the first time in seven tries by grounding fifth-seeded Croat Ivan Dodig 7-5, 6-3, while the second-seeded Tsonga outlasted sixth-seeded fellow Frenchman Edouard Roger-Vasselin 6-7 (3-7), 6-2, 6-2 at Marseille's Palais des Sports.
Tsonga beat Czech Tomas Berdych in last year's marquee final to capture a second Marseille title in five years.
Gasquet's semifinal opponent on Saturday will be third-seeded Latvian Ernests Gulbis, while Tsonga will take on upstart German Jan-Lennard Struff. Gulbis got past eighth-seeded Frenchman Nicolas Mahut 6-3, 7-6 (7-1), while Struff took out veteran French left-hander Michael Llodra 6-4, 6-3 on Day 5.
The 33-year-old Llodra was the 2010 Marseille champion and is a two-time runner-up at this tournament.