Belarus’ Aryna Sabalenka and Poland’s Magda Linette won their respective matches at the Rod Laver Arena to complete the women’s semifinal bracket of the Australian Open.
Linette, up first, continued to outshine her countrywoman and world no1 Iga Swiatek, by upsetting Karolina Pliskova 6-3, 7-5, adding the former world no1 to the list that includes Anett Kontaveit, Ekaterina Alexandrova and WTA Finals champion Caroline Garcia.
Pliskova’s slow start was not helped by her 36 unforced errors as she chased the game from the very beginning with Linette having an answer for everything in the second set for a relatively comfortable win.
Magda Linette will now have to face a surging Aryna Sabalenka next as they both look to reach their first grand slam final in Australia.
Meanwhile, a determined Sabalenka outmuscled Donna Vekic 6-3, 6-2 in the last women’s quarterfinal.
The highest-seeded player left in the draw had to overcome a physical one-hour first set littered with breakpoints before running away with the second to reach her fourth Grand Slam semi-final and her first in Melbourne.
Vekic who held a 5-1 career record against the Belarusian, failed to cope with her opponent’s power once she got her forehand going with her 13 double faults not helping her cause either.
Sabalenka herself struggled with service issues in the final game, having to save three break points before sealing her win.
Meanwhile, over in the men’s bracket, Ben Shelton and Tommy Paul are vying for a spot in the men’s semifinal with nine-time winner Novak Djokovic also set to take on Andrey Rublev today as well.