Murray reaches Italian Open semifinals
Andy Murray overcame a slow start to beat Florian Mayer of Germany 1-6, 6-1, 6-1 Friday and become the first British man to reach the Italian Open semifinals in the Open era.
The fourth-ranked Murray also showed good clay-court form in Monte Carlo last month, taking a set off Rafael Nadal in the semifinals.
The last British man to reach the semifinals was George Hughes in 1932, while the last British player to win the title at the Foro Italico was Virginia Wade in 1971.
Hughes was the only British man to win the tournament in 1931.
Murray's semifinal opponent will be either Novak Djokovic or Robin Soderling, who were playing a night match.
Djokovic is on a 36-match winning streak and could take the No. 1 ranking from Nadal if he wins this tournament and Nadal fails to win his quarterfinal against Marin Cilic.
In women's action, Australian Open runner-up Li Na of China beat Greta Arn of Hungary 6-3, 6-1. Na's semifinal opponent will be either defending French Open champion Francesca Schiavone or Sam Stosur, who were playing later in a rematch of last year's Roland Garros final.