ST PETERSBURG, Russia, Oct 28 (Reuters) Third seed Mario Ancic crushed 18-year-old newcomer Ernest Gulbis of Latvia 6-2 6-3 to reach the St Petersburg Open final today.
The Croat broke the 204th-ranked Gulbis, who was making his ATP debut, twice in the first set and once more in the second to wrap up a comfortable victory.
The win kept alive Ancic's chances of securing a spot at next month's season-ending Masters Cup.
He is currently 11th in the ATP Race with 349 points, 61 points behind eighth-placed Spaniard Tommy Robredo, who lost in the first round here.
The top eight are guaranteed a place in Shanghai. Ancic will gain 38 points if he wins in St Petersburg.
Last year's winner Thomas Johansson of Sweden takes on Russian wildcard Igor Kunitsyn in the second semi-final later today.
REUTERS DH SSC1642