Kiwi Marcus Daniell has reached the ASB Classic doubles final for the second time, after the Masterton-born Daniell and partner Philipp Oswald beat fourth seeds Austin Krajicek and Franko Skugor 6-2 7-6 (5) on Friday.

Daniell lifted the trophy here in 2010 – the first ATP title of his career – and will be confident in Saturday's final, after another highly impressive display.

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Daniell and Oswald took the first set comfortably, then stayed strong as the second set turned into a bit of a dogfight.

But they got early momentum in the tiebreak and never relinquished it, closing out the contest in one hour 23 minutes.


Daniell and Oswald, who first teamed up last September, came out of the blocks fast.

They grabbed a break in the fourth game for a 3-1 lead, and while they always looked comfortable on their serve, their opponents began to wobble.

Krajicek and Franko Skugor had never played together before this week, and at times lacked the cohesion that only comes with time on court.

At 2-5 Skugor was 15-40 down on his serve, and a crisp Oswald backhand volley sealed the set in 33 minutes.

Games went with serve in the second set, with both teams lifting their levels, before an inevitable tiebreaker.

Daniell provided some early impetus in the breaker, with a searing forehand pass over the highest part of the net, followed by a swift intercept at the net on the next poing for a 3-0 lead.

Krajicek saved two match points with well placed serves, before Oswald sealed the contest, with a forehand volley off a Daniell serve.

On Saturday they will face New Zealand-raised Ben McLachlan and Luke Bambridge (Great Britain), who defeated the Belgian pair of Sandor Gille and Joran Vliegen 7-6 (5) 7-6 (4).


It's the second successive final for McLachlan, after he took the title last year in Auckland, playing alongside German Jan-Lennard Struff to beat Kiwi Michael Venus and Raven Klaasen (South Africa).

McLachlan, who grew up in Queenstown, switched to playing under the Japanese flag in June 2017, able to do so as his mother was born in the Asian country.

Playing another final on Stanley Street holds special memories for McLachlan, who was a ball boy here as an 11-year-old in 2005.

"It was a dream when I was a ball boy here, years and years ago," said McLachlan. "It was a good experience and our coach told us to try it out. But I actually fainted on court from heat stroke. I had to go off and puke on the side. I was on centre court when it happened so it was pretty embarrassing. But I've got a lot better at hydrating now."

McLachlan is looking forward to facing Daniell, as their association goes back a long way.

"Marcus is a great guy," said McLachlan. "We have been friends for a long time. We practice a lot together. I came up for a week and practiced with him in the off season. We know each other's games well."