Krejcikova thrashes Gauff to reach French Open semi-final

Barbora Krejčíková

Barbora Krejcikova reached her first Grand Slam
semi-final at the French Open on Wednesday as she beat 17-year-old Coco Gauff
7-6 (8/6), 6-3.

The
33rd-ranked Krejcikova saved five set points in the opening set and finished
off Gauff, the 24th seed, on her sixth match point to set up a clash with
reigning champion Iga Swiatek or Maria Sakkari for a spot in the final.

The Czech
Republic seed, who is also through to the last four of the women’s doubles with
Katerina Siniakova, claimed her 10th successive win on the tour having arrived
in Paris on the back of a maiden singles title in Strasbourg.

“I’m
here and I’m in the semi-finals, and I never really imagined I’d be standing
here one day on this court, especially in singles, and being able to win,”
said Krejcikova, a 2018 Roland Garros doubles champion.

“Already
for me this is something I’d never dreamed of.”

Krejcikova recovered from a rocky start, falling 3-0 and 5-3 behind against Gauff, the youngest Grand Slam quarter-finalist since 2006.

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But the
Czech saved a set point on the Gauff serve in the ninth game, and fought off
two more at 5-6 to secure a vital hold and force a tie-break.

Two superb
forehand winners snuffed out another two set points for Gauff, as Krejcikova
won the last four points of the tie-break to clinch the first set after 70
minutes.

“I
think it was very important. I was down all the time. I just had to go for
every point and every ball and just enjoy it. I just made it somehow,”
said Krejcikova, battling nerves of her own after racing 5-0 ahead in the
second set.

“In
the second set I started really well and I was leading. I got a little bit
tight.”

Gauff saved
five match points but eventually fell short, ending her run after becoming the
youngest American woman to make the last eight in Paris since Jennifer Capriati
in 1993.

“She’s
incredible,” said Krejcikova, 25. “She’s 17 years old. When I was 17
I played ITFs, I played 15Ks.”

“I
just told her to keep going, and her time’s going to come.”

Author: desi123

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