Andy Murray came through one of the most extraordinary tie breaks of modern times to overcome Philipp Kohlschreiber in the Dubai Duty Free tournament.
The world number one had to save no less than seven match points for the German before finally winning the second set 20-18.
Kohlschreiber had taken the first set on a tie-break and was on the brink of a memorable victory, but after the Scot came through the tough test in the second set, he blazed through the third 6-1 to set up a semi-final against Lucas Pouille. If he wins, he will be up against Fernando Verdasco or Robin Haase in the final.
Speaking after the match, Murray said: "I've never played a tie-break like that ever, not in juniors, nothing has been close to that.
"I'll probably never play another one like that again. I've been playing on the tour for 11, 12 years now and nothing, nothing's been close to that."
The match had been a tough one for Murray until the final set. He had served two double faults to lose the first set tie break and although he had broken his opponent early in the second, Kohlschreiber broke back as the Wimbledon champion served for the set.
Paying tribute to his opponent, Kohlschreiber said: "Of course losing is always disappointing, but I'm not sad. I think I played great tennis, one of my best matches. You can be thinking about one or two shots, but it was just a great match. It's well-deserved, he's a great fighter, he never gave up."
Fans booking corporate hospitality for The Championships, Wimbledon may be hoping Murray can now push on to win the tournament, which would be the first this year after a mixed start.
Having lost his first final of the year to Novak Djokovic in Abu Dhabi, the five-times Australian Open finalist slipped to a shock early defeat in Melbourne against world number 50 Mischa Zverev, who took advantage of the unusually fast courts with his serve-volley game. Shortly after, the world number one went down with shingles, a condition he has now recovered from.
However, it is not just Murray who has had mixed fortunes. Roger Federer came to Dubai on a high after his Australian Open triumph, but the 18-times Grand Slam winner crashed out against Evgeny Donskoy, who in turn was beaten by Pouille.
US Open champion Stan Wawrinka also suffered a shock first-round loss in Dubai to Samir Dzumhur, while French Open champion Novak Djokovic was knocked out of the quarter-finals of the Mexico Open by Nick Kyrgios. The erratic Aussie was on top form with a brilliant serving display to win the first ever meeting between the two 7-6, 7-5.
However, Australian Open finalist Rafael Nadal is still going strong in Acapulco, having reached the semi-finals where he will face Marin Cilic.
With the ATP 1000 tournaments at Indian Wells and Miami coming up this month, Murray could extend his lead over Djokovic and the rest by winning either event. The Serb won both last year.