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Cameron Norrie reaches Indian Wells semi-finals to become British No 1 with win over Diego Schwartzman

"It's the biggest win of my career with all the circumstances and the pressure," says Cameron Norrie after progressing to the last four of Indian Wells where he will play Grigor Dimitrov; the 26-year-old Briton is set to overtake Dan Evans as the new British No 1

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Cameron Norrie secured a spot in the last four at Indian Wells on Thursday

Cameron Norrie booked his place in the semi-finals of the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells with an impressive straight-sets victory over Diego Schwartzman to secure the British No 1 ranking.

Norrie, world No 26, was runner-up at the San Diego Open earlier this month and reached the last eight of a Masters 1000 event for the first time by battling past Tommy Paul in three sets.

The 26-year-old, though, wasted little time in taking the early initiative against 11th seed Schwartzman on Thursday.

Norrie raced into a 4-0 lead against the world No 15 before another break and hold saw him take the opening set to love in just 31 minutes.

Schwartzman eventually got on the board in the opening game of the second set.

Norrie, though, gained an early break when Schwartzman sent a return long only to then fail to hold himself at 2-2.

Argentina's Diego Schwartzman was unable to keep Norrie at bay
Image: Argentina's Diego Schwartzman was unable to keep Norrie at bay

Schwartzman was then broken again in the fifth and seventh games, swinging the momentum back towards his British rival, who closed in on victory.

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Norrie served out his first match point to love when another Schwartzman return went long, completing a comprehensive 6-0 6-2 victory in one hour and 13 minutes.

"I am so pleased to be through," Norrie said after the match. "It's the biggest win of my career with all the circumstances and the pressure. I was pretty happy with everything.

"It was such a big moment for me this morning playing my first Masters quarter-final, especially against Diego. He is such a great competitor and I thought I was in for an absolute battle."

As a result of his run to the semi-finals, Norrie is set to break into the world's top 20 - and so replace Dan Evans as the British No 1.

"It was never really a goal of mine, but it's definitely a great bonus to be British number one," said Norrie, who recorded his 45th win on the ATP Tour this season.

"I want to keep pushing. I think I've got a lot of things to improve on, but I think it's one of those things you've got to enjoy."

Norrie will face Grigor Dimitrov in the semi-finals in Indian Wells after the Bulgarian, a three-time Grand Slam semi-finalist, beat Polish world No 12 Hubert Hurkacz 3-6 6-4 7-6 (7-2).

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