Frances Tiafoe explains how he used his speed to get the better of Cameron Norrie

Frances Tiafoe enjoys his victory Credit: Alamy
Frances Tiafoe enjoys his victory Credit: Alamy

Cameron Norrie is known for being athletic on court, but he had no answer to Frances Tiafoe’s speed and aggression during their Indian Wells Open quarter-final clash.

After claiming one of the most impressive wins of his career over sixth seed Andrey Rublev in round four, Norrie was hoping to extend his eight-match winning streak, but Tiafoe didn’t give him a sniff on Wednesday as the American won 6-4, 6-4.

Tiafoe broke in game seven of the first set and took that momentum into the second set as he broke in game one. However, Norrie hit back immediately only for the world No 16 to take a commanding 5-2 lead with two more breaks. Although the British No 1 got one break back, Tiafoe served it out.

Asked about his tactics, the American replied: “I’m using my speed a lot more to be aggressive, not just to react to balls and out the corners and stuff,” he said. “I’m doing that much better now. Using my speed to be aggressive, coming forward much more, sticking volleys, and just being athletic out there.

“It’s tough for guys. I’m really coming at you. Yeah, he didn’t have any response for me today. Cam’s going to be Cam and make it tough for me at the end. I blinked a little there at the end, but for the most part I thought it was one-way traffic.”

The 12th seed will face Daniil Medvedev in his first ATP Masters 1000 semi-final after the former world No 1 claimed a 6-3, 7-5 win over Alejandro Davidovich Fokina.

Tiafoe, who also reached the US Open semi-final last year, has only one singles title to his name, the 2018 Delray Beach Open, while he has four runners-up trophies and naturally he wants to start winning bigger titles.

“I mean, winning events like these is pretty much — the more and more you put yourself in positions like these, the more and more you have chances to win these events and cross the line, right? To get to that top echelon of the game, you need to win tournaments like these,” he said.

“Being in semis is great. I’m very happy to be here. It’s just semi-finals. There’s more to do. It only gets tougher. Beating quality guys only gets tougher.

“Take it for what is. I’m happy for every milestone, humbled, and very, you know, very thankful for the opportunity, but gotta keep the head down and keep going.”

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