Houston - Argentine fourth seed Juan Monaco edged South African fifth seed Kevin Anderson 7-6 (7/4), 7-5 on Friday to reach the semi-finals of the $442 500 ATP US Men's Clay Court Championships.
The South American will play on Saturday for a berth in Sunday's final against qualifier Michael Russell, who outlasted Ryan Harrison 6-1, 5-7, 6-3 in an all-American quarter-final.
Monaco, ranked 16th in the world, won his fourth career ATP title, and first since 2007, last February at Vina del Mar and reached the semi-finals last month at Miami, losing to eventual winner and World No 1 Novak Djokovic.
Anderson, ranked 33rd, was denied a chance for his second title in as many months after taking his second career ATP crown last month at Delray Beach, Florida.
Russell, a 33-year-old hometown hero, reached his first career ATP semi-final by holding off Harrison, a 19-year-old who was the youngest qualifier at Houston since Andy Roddick won the 2002 title at age 19.
Results on Friday from the US Men's Clay Court Championships played on outdoor clay courts at the River Oaks Country Club:
Quarter-finalsJuan Monaco (4), Argentina, def. Kevin Anderson (5), South Africa, 7-6 (7/4), 7-5.
Michael Russell, United States, def. Ryan Harrison, United States, 6-1, 5-7, 6-3.
John Isner (2), United States, def. Ryan Sweeting, United States, 7-6 (7/1), 7-6 (7/4).
Feliciano Lopez, Spain, def. Carlos Berlocq, Argentina, 6-4, 2-2. (retired injured)