15 January 2016 | David Packman

Top seed Paolo Lorenzi has defeated Marcel Granollers in three tight sets to reach the final of the Canberra 75K ATP Challenger on Friday.

“I’m happy for my tennis, because it was a very good match,” Lorenzi said after the victory.

The 34-year-old Italian needed nearly three hours to stave of a resilient Granollers 7-5 6-7(0) 7-5, and in doing so became just the second man in ATP Challenger history to reach 30 finals, joining Taiwan’s Yen-Hsun Lu (36).

“That’s true,” Lorenzi said of the achievement, “But of course, every final is like the first one.”

He will now face Croat Ivan Dodig, the fifth seed a winner over Spaniard Daniel Munoz de la Nava 6-1 6-3.

“It will be a tough match,” Lorenzi said of the upcoming final. “Ivan has played some good matches this week and he’s in good shape.”

While the Italian world No. 69 leads the head-to-head tally 2-0 over Dodig, the pair has not met since 2012.

Following the final, both players will head to Melbourne Park for the Australian Open, where Lorenzo will face 29th seed Grigor Dimitrov in the opening round.

“I saw the draw,” he said. “It’s very tough. But of course I will try to do my best.”

Dodig plays French qualifier Quentin Halys, a quarterfinalist in Canberra, before a potential showdown with Novak Djokovic.

Live streaming of the Canberra 75K ATP Challenger final with live scoring is available through www.atpchallengertour.com.