The Israelis have now won four of their last five matches after losing their first two outings of the season.
By ALLON SINAI
Andy Ram and Yoni Erlich advanced to their first semifinal of the year on Thursday afternoon after edging David Skoch and Jordan Kerr 6-7(5), 7-5, 10-7 at the PBZ Zagreb tournament in Croatia.
The Israelis, who are seeded first in the $460,000 tournament, continued their improvement from the Australian Open and have now won four of their last five matches after losing their first two outings of the season.
Ram and Erlich, who are currently No. 13 in the ATP rankings, await the winner of the quarterfinal match between the Swiss-French duo of Yves Allegro and Fabrice Santoro and Germans Michael Kohlmann and Alexander Waske.
After splitting the first 12 games of the match, with neither duo managing to break serve, the first set had to be decided by a tiebreaker. Ram and Erlich saved three set points, but Skoch and Kerr held their nerve and took the first set.
The Czech/Australian duo got the first break of the match in the fifth game of the second set and were seemingly in complete control of the match. But the Israelis broke their opponents twice in their next four service games to win the second set and send the contest into a deciding match tiebreaker.
Ram and Erlich raced to a 4-1 lead and, despite letting Skoch and Kerr to come back to within one point of tying the score (8-7), maintained their advantage and closed out the match.
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