Coco Gauff downed Italy’s Jasmine Paolini 6-3, 6-2, and Aryna Sabalenka beat an ailing Tunisian fifth seed Ons Jabeur 7-5, 6-3 to reach the Cincinnati Open semifinals of Friday.
Earlier, World number one Iga Swiatek cruised past Czech 10th seed Marketa Vondrousova 7-6(3), 6-1 to make it into the top-four.
Gauff has yet to drop a set in Cincinnati and after going down an early break on Friday she found the momentum against Paolini, breaking the Italian in the third, fifth and ninth games of the first set.
Gauff, who picked up the biggest title of her career in Washington earlier this month, dropped her serve in the first game of the second set but quickly hit her stride to sweep the final six games of the brisk, one hour and 13-minute match.
The 19-year-old acknowledged that while she does not have a good track record against upcoming opponent Swiatek, she believes recent improvements to her game could yield better results.
“I do feel a lot more confident going into it tomorrow. But she’s not an easy opponent to play, especially against me,” she told reporters.
“I think I really just got to take it point by point and try to stay mentally engaged every ball.”
Unseeded Czech Karolina Muchova needed just 11 minutes on the court to reach the semis as compatriot Marie Bouzkova retired from their match with a right leg strain while trailing 3-0.
Muchova now faces Belarusian second seed Sabalenka, whom she beat in the Roland Garros semifinal earlier this year.
Jabeur overcame Sabalenka en route to the Wimbledon final this year and their rematch had all the makings of an epic battle as they twice traded breaks in a tense first set before Sabalenka closed out the 12th game with a lethal backhand return.
Jabeur was up a break in the second set when the affair began to unravel, however, as the Tunisian took a medical timeout to have her right foot taped by a member of the tournament staff.
She bounded off her bench and jogged back onto the court but was not herself anymore as she handed Sabalenka the break with a double fault in the sixth game and could not put up much of a fight as the Belarusian broke her again in the eighth.
“I’m super happy to be in the semifinals again in Cincinnati, but right now I’m a little bit sad for Ons,” the Australian Open winner said in on-court remarks.
“Fingers crossed - (Muchova is) a great player, we had really great battle at Roland Garros.”
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