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Tennis-Davydenko downs Bracciali to reach Rotterdam semis

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ROTTERDAM, Netherlands, Feb 24 (Reuters) Second seed Nikolay Davydenko brushed aside Daniele Bracciali 6-4 6-2 to reach the last four of the Rotterdam World tournament today.

The 24-year-old Russian, chasing a sixth career title, is yet to drop a set at the injury-ravaged tournament, although he was unhappy with his performance against the Italian qualifier.

''The result was good but I wasn't satisfied about my play,'' the world number six told a news conference.

''JI felt a bit tired, therefore it was hard to concentrate today. I know I have to improve my game for the semi-final.'' Davydenko had an impressive season in 2005 and stepped into the top 10, but still clinched only one title in St Polten.

In the semi-final the Russian baseliner will meet Czech Radek Stepanek or Serbian teenager Novak Djokovic, who upset Tim Henman yesterday.

''I prefer Djokovic because he like me prefers a baseline rally, while Radek (Stepanek) always wants to speed up and go into serve volley,'' Davydenko added.

Belgian Christophe Rochus cruised to a 6-3 6-3 win over Briton Arvind Parmar, who entered the tournament as fourth lucky loser, an ATP Tour record.

Rochus faces a possible semi-final meeting with his younger brother Olivier on Saturday, providing he gets past in-form Finn Jarkko Nieminen later today.

REUTERS DH PM2109

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