Del Potro books final spot
Top seed Juan Martin del Potro advanced to the final of the Japan Open as he saw off Spain's Nicolas Almagro courtesy of two tie-breaks.
The Argentinian came through a tight encounter 7-6 (9/7) 7-6 (7/1) and will now face Canada's Milos Raonic who overcame Ivan Dodig in the other semi-final.
Del Potro sent down 12 aces to eventually overpower Almagro and will now be aiming for his third title of the season on Sunday having already triumphed in Rotterdam and Washington.
"We both played at our maximum," said world No 7 del Potro. "He hit some unbelievable shots and I had to come back with some amazing shots. One or two points can be the difference and I played two good tiebreaks and played well at the important moments."
Raonic will be chasing a spot of redemption in Tokyo having lost in last year's final to local favourite Kei Nishikori.
The 22-year-old Canadian is in excellent form having won the Thailand Open last week and proved too strong for Dodig as he came through 7-6 (7/4) 6-1.
Raonic actually found himself 4-1 down in the first set tie-break but then reeled off six straight points to get himself ahead.
He then pulled away in the second with Dodig unable to make any impact on his booming serve, Raonic finishing, like Del Potro, with a total of 12 aces.
"It will be important I dictate tomorrow," said Raonic, who beat the Argentine in their only previous meeting in Montreal earlier this year.
"I have to take control of my serve and keep him back as much as possible. I just have to focus on the things I can control."