Sixth seed Garbine Muguruza was the first to book her spot in the Shenzhen Open semifinals with a 6-4 2-6 6-4 victory over Kazakhstan’s Zarina Diyas. The Spaniard struck 13 aces and with 10 aces in the previous round this marks the first time in her WTA career she has posted double-digit aces in back-to-back matches.
Muguruza’s opponent in tomorrow’s first semifinal match on Centre Court will be Russian Ekaterina Alexandrova, who notched her second win in as many days over a Chinese opponent as she rallied from a set down to oust number four seed Wang Qiang 3-6 6-4 6-3.
In-form Kazakh-Russian Elena Rybakina, at a career high ranking of No.36, continued her fine run as she blazed past third seed Elise Mertens 6-4 4-6 6-2 to reach her second consecutive semifinal on the WTA Tour.
The 20-year-old, who has now reached the quarterfinals or better in her last four tournaments, was not in her best serving form as she failed to notch a single ace, but the seventh seed made the winners when it counted; she converted an impressive six out of the seven break chances she created, while saving 56% of the nine she faced.
Rybakina’s next opponent will be Krystina Pliskova, who continued her fine serving form to defeat Ukraine’s Kateryna Bondarenko 6-4 6-4 to reach her first Shenzhen Open semifinal in four consecutive appearances at the International-level event.
The lanky 6-foot-tall Czech, who is yet to drop a set in the tournament, racked up 16 aces and only dropped a single game on serve during a match in which she converted three of the thirteen break opportunities she fashioned.