Tomas Berdych kept his ATP World Tour Finals title hopes alive with a 6-4 6-4 victory over David Ferrer, a result which eliminates the Spaniard from the season-ending event.
Both men came into the match on the back of opening Group A defeats, however it was Czech fifth seed Berdych who reignited his semi-final hopes with decisive breaks of serve in the ninth game of each set.
World No 3 Ferrer was playing in his 83rd match of the year and it proved one encounter too far for the 31-year-old, who bows out of the London event on the back of successive straight-sets defeats.
Ferrer boasted a 7-3 head-to-head advantage coming into Wednesday night's win-or-bust clash but looked a shadow of the player who reached the final in Paris last week during his tournament-opening defeat to Rafael Nadal the previous day.
The Spanish veteran dispatched Berdych en route to the final in the French capital but the big-serving Czech started the stronger and forced Ferrer to stave off three break points in the seventh game.
The Spaniard may have escaped then, but there was no denying Berdych on Ferrer's next service game as he moved into the net to break via a backhand volley.
The second set followed a similar pattern to the first with Ferrer struggling to assert himself against Berdych's booming serve.
With pressure gradually building on Ferrer, Berdych made his move in game nine once again, moving 0-40 ahead before breaking.
Serving for the match offered up no problems, Berdych sealing an invaluable win with his ninth ace of the evening.