Youzhny ousts defending champion Mallise

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Chennai, Jan 5(UNI) Russia's Mikhail Youzhny, seeded no4, and Croat Marin Cilic joined the semi-final line up with contrasting quarter-final victories in the Chennai Open 2008 here late last night.

Both the last eight matches had to be played only after midnight as the schedule on the centre court was disrupted with the courts being drenched due to rain. The stadium staff fought hard to dry the courts.

The world no 19, Youzhny, seeking his first triumph in the new season, put paid to Mallise's hopes of being the second player to defend his Chennai Open title emulating Spaniard Carlos Moya had the match in his control to win 6-4, 6-4 in straight sets.

However Cilic , who is also in the doubles semis with Pakistan's Aisam-ul-Haq Quereshi,was extended to three sets by a fighting Robin Hasse of Netherlands 4-6, 6-2, 6-3.

The hard serving croat,will take on Youzhny while the two star Spanish players top seed Rafael Nadal and unseeded Carlos Moya will play the semi finals later this evening.

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