Defending champion Paul Coll overturned a two-game deficit and saved two match balls to record a stunning victory over Scotland’s Alan Clyne in the quarter-final of the IG Open de Paris – setting up a semi-final clash with top seed Chris Simpson in the process.
New Zealander Coll, who conquered Frenchman Lucas Serme in last year’s final, came through a dramatic five-game thriller against England’s Charles Sharpes in the previous round and was forced into another gargantuan encounter by World No.35 Clyne.
Both players faced off in an enthralling battle, with a mix of attritional and high-octane rallies lighting up the court in front of a captivated crowd. After going 2-1 up, Clyne found himself with two match balls, but was unable to convert as a determined Coll charged round court to make a number of stunning retrievals. The 24-year-old duly levelled things up before surging to victory in game five to bring an end to a gruelling 110-minute spectacle.
He is set to face England’s Chris Simpson – the man who he lost to in last month’s El Gouna International – in the next round after the man from Guernsey saw off Serme in straight games.
“I’m happy I managed to play better than yesterday, I backed up well,” said Coll
“It was a physical match with some very long rallies. I was more aggressive at the beginning of the fifth because I knew the player who would take the initiative was likely to get on top. It’s not my usual game so maybe I took him by surprise.
“Now it’s time to recover before tomorrow’s match. It’d be nice to have a shot at getting my revenge against Chris.”
England’s Declan James recorded a superb win over third seeded compatriot Adrian Waller and the World No.39 will go head-to-head with Nicolas Mueller, the swiss number two seed who beat Greg Lobban, in the last four.
Results – Quarter-Final: IG Open de Paris 2016
 Chris Simpson (ENG) bt  Lucas Serme (FRA) 3-0: 11-8, 11-8, 12-10 (50m)
 Paul Coll (NZL) bt  Alan Clyne (SCO) 3-2: 11-8, 9-11, 8-11, 14-12, 11-5 (110m)
 Declan James (ENG) bt  Adrian Waller (ENG) 3-1: 11-6, 11-13, 12-10, 11-9 (85m)
 Nicolas Mueller (SUI) bt  Greg Lobban (SCO) 3-1: 11-9, 9-11, 11-4, 11-4 (48m)
Draw – Semi-Final
 Chris Simpson (ENG) v  Paul Coll (NZL)
 Declan James (ENG) v  Nicolas Mueller (SUI)