Serbian World number one Novak Djokovic moved into the semi-finals of the Miami Masters after holding off Spain's David Ferrer 6-2, 7-6 (7-1).
Djokovic will face Juan Monaco for a place in the final after the Argentinian celebrated his 28th birthday with a 6-1, 6-3 win over American eighth seed Mardy Fish.
Djokovic cruised through the first set in just 32 minutes and when he broke Ferrer's first serve of the second set, an easy win seemed assured.
Ferrer broke back straight away, however, then held his own before Djokovic broke again to go 5-4 up.
Djokovic still could not serve out the match, with Ferrer breaking again, eventually forcing the set into a tie-break.
Djokovic then showed why he is the world number one by raising his game, easily winning the tie-break to wrap up the match.
"David is a great competitor in every sense and I really wanted to get it done in straight sets because physically he is always there," Djokovic said.
Monaco, who beat American Andy Roddick in the previous round, will head into the semi-final in a confident mood.
The 21st seed won 71 per cent of his first serve points and proved too much for Fish, who could not put pressure on his opponent until breaking to level the second set at 3-3.
But Monaco closed out the match in one hour and 22 minutes and was clearly delighted to have given himself a chance of reaching what would be the biggest final of his career.
"I meant every shot that I played, I did. It was a perfect match for me," said Monaco, who has won four ATP Tour events.
"It was unbelievable. That was the way to celebrate my birthday, playing like this. I feel proud and very happy."
Fish agreed that Monaco had been too much for him to handle on the day.
"He did a lot of things well and I think more than anything else, he shrunk the court extremely well with his movement and that's why I think you saw a ton of errors from me," said Fish.
Friday's other semi-final features Britain's Andy Murray against Rafa Nadal.
ReutersTags: sport, tennis, united-states First posted March 30, 2012 14:04:02