French tennis player Arnaud Clement has beaten former Australian and U.S. Open champion Marat Safin of Russia to reach the finals of the Legg Mason tennis Classic here in Washington. Clement next plays 19-year-old Britain's Andy Murray.
Clement, a finalist at the 2001 Australian Open and the 11th seed, knocked the Russian out in straight sets, 7-6, 7-6. Clement says he knew if he played consistently he could win.
"He can break, he can serve he can do everything," said Clement. "But sometimes I know that he can make a few mistakes in a row and I know that I just have to be focused to be very consistent through all the match."
The Frenchman takes on Andy Murray of Britain, a straight-set winner over Russia's Dmitry Tursunov (6-2, 7-5). Murray came back from a five-two second set deficit to win Saturday, but says he cannot make mistakes against Clement.
"You know, he's very consistent. He's really quick. He's actually got a good serve - a very good serve for his height and he returns well," said Murray. "You know he doesn't do anything spectacular, but he doesn't do anything badly. I think all of his shots are very good so it is going to be a tough match."
Murray has played Clement only once before - at last year's U.S. Open with the French player winning in five sets (6-2, 7-6, 6-7, 2-6, and 6-0).