ROTTERDAM, Netherlands -- Third-seeded Tomas Berdych of the Czech Republic beat Ernests Gulbis of Latvia 6-3, 6-2 Saturday to reach the final of the ABN Amro tournament.
Berdych's play was more consistent, especially on his serves, though Gulbis was often better -- if unpredictable -- in the rallies.
In the first set, Berdych won a 15-shot rally to set up a single breakpoint, which he also won. The pair exchanged words after Gulbis issued a late challenge as to whether Berdych's return was in.
Gulbis failed to capitalize on the one breakpoint he had in the match, during the fourth game of the second set. Afterward the Latvian appeared to lose concentration, failing to win a single point in his following service game.
The match lasted just an hour and five minutes.
"Probably it looks on paper that it was easy, but it definitely was not," said Berdych. Gulbis had won two of their five previous meetings, ousting Berdych from Wimbledon in 2012.
"I was more calm, more focused, and that was my advantage today," Berdych said.
Later Saturday, Dutch wildcard Igor Sijsling plays Marin Cilic of Croatia in the other semifinal. The last time a Dutch player reached the final was 2003. But Cilic is the man in form, having won the Zagreb indoor last week and beating two top-10 players - Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Andy Murray, on route to the last four in Rotterdam.