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Kohlschreiber To Play Fognini For Stuttgart Title

Stuttgart, Germany

Fognini© AFP/Getty ImagesFabio Fognini finished runner-up at Bucharest and St. Petersburg last year.

Second seed Philipp Kohlschreiber will meet Fabio Fognini on Sunday for the MercedesCup title. Kohlschreiber leads Fognini 2-0 in their FedEx ATP Head2Head series.

Kohlschreiber told ATPWorldTour.com, "Fabio has been very strong this tournament, particularly in beating Tommy [Haas], who is a great player. He plays well on clay and I know it will be tough. I hope that I play a good match tomorrow."

Kohlschreiber became the fourth different German to reach the Stuttgart final since 1978 – and the first since Tommy Haas in 1999 – with a 6-3, 6-3 victory over 2009 runner-up Victor Hanescu in 81 minutes.

"It is always great to play in front of a home crowd in Germany," added Kohlschreiber. "I am very satisfied with my performance today. It was a very close match, but at the end I made the right decisions and won the big points."

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Earlier on Saturday, Fognini got the better of Roberto Bautista Agut for the second time this year to reach the title match.

Fognini won his second match in 10 clay-court semi-finals with a 6-1, 6-3 victory over Bautista Agut in 58 minutes. Bautista Agut staged a short-lived comeback from 1-4 in the second set.

"I am really happy, it was another great match for me to reach the final," Fognini told ATPWorldTour.com. "I started really well, solid on the baseline and on my forehand. I didn’t give him a lot of opportunity to play."

He follows in the footsteps of fellow Italian Andrea Gaudenzi, who reached the 1994 final (l. to Berasategui). Fognini, 26, will be attempting to capture his first title in his third ATP World Tour final.

Kohlschreiber has a 4-5 record in ATP World Tour finals. Three of his four titles have come on German soil. He will be attempting to become the first German titlist since Michael Stich in 1991.

In addition to prize money, the titlist will take home a brand new white Mercedes-Benz A 45 AMG 'Edition 1'.

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Bagnis/Bellucci Reach Doubles Final
Facundo Bagnis and Thomaz Bellucci advanced to their first ATP World Tour team final after a 6-7(3), 6-4, 10-6 victory over fourth seeds Dustin Brown and Paul Hanley in just over 90 minutes. They next play Poles Tomasz Bednarek and Mateusz Kowalczyk for the title.

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