Tokyo - France's 31st-ranked Adrian Mannarino secured a spot in the men's singles finals as he overpowered top seed Croatian Marin Cilic at Japan Open on Saturday.
Mannarino defeated big-serving Cilic, runner-up to Roger Federer at this year's Wimbledon, with a 6-7 (5/7), 6-4, 6-0 win in a fierce match which lasted for nearly three hours.
The 29-year-old Frenchman now faces Belgium's David Goffin who beat Cilic in the semi-final in Tokyo last season.
Goffin, 26, booked a place in the finals after a tight two-hour match with eighth seed Diego Schwartzman from Argentina.
Goffin finished off Schwartzman, who put an end to the impressive run of world number 46 Steve Johnson on Friday, with a 7-6 (7/3) 7-6 (8/6) victory.
Both the first and second set went to a tie-break but the match ended when Schwartzman hit a backhand long of the baseline.
The Japan Open has been played since 1972 and its previous winners include a roll-call of the game's greats, including Ken Rosewall, John McEnroe, Pete Sampras, Federer and Nadal.
Results of singles matches at the Japan Open men's tennis tournament in Tokyo on Saturday (x denotes seeding):
David Goffin (BEL x4) bt Diego Schwartzman (ARG x8) 7-6 (7/3), 7-6 (8/6)
Adrian Mannarino (FRA) bt Marin Cilic (CRO x1) 6-7 (5/7), 6-4, 6-0