San Diego semifinals promise heat and big hitting

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The women’s singles draw at the WTA 500 San Diego Open is down to the final four players. Join us as we delve into the matchups set for the semifinals.

Danielle Collins versus Barbora Krejcikova

Danielle Collins is back in the semifinals, the same round she reached here last year, and will face Barbora Krejcikova for the chance at the title. This will mark the first encounter between the two, who have neither competed against each other nor practiced together.

Collins ousted second seed Caroline Garcia 6-2 6-3. Although the American had some struggles with injuries earlier in the tournament, diligent recovery routines and good sleep have paid off. She takes the lingering issues in stride, saying “as long as you don’t have two or three injuries you’re dealing with, I feel like everybody has something that they’re dealing with on the court.” The former world number seven is also playing doubles at this tournament, adding to the physicality of her week.

The fourth seed from Czech Republic, Krejcikova, known to be not only a tennis player but tennis fan, is excited for her first encounter with the 29-year-old from Florida. She said, “it’s gonna be new for both of us and I’m really looking forward to this matchup. I know that she’s playing very well and she likes to cheer herself up a lot so she’s very motivated. I’m looking forward to that.” Playing on US soil, the former college player can expect to have plenty of cheering from the stands as well.

Sofia Kenin versus Emma Navarro

Emma Navarro and Sofia Kenin fought their way into the semifinal for the top half of the San Diego Open draw.

The Moscow-born American Kenin eased past Anastasia Potapova 6-2 6-3. Her reflection on the match was simple: “My mindset was good, I had a good game plan, I knew what I needed to do, and I executed really well.” Previewing the semifinal with the American qualifier, the 2020 Australian Open winner said, “I’ve never played her, of course she’s having a great year so, um, you know, we’ll see what happens.”

Navarro reached the semifinal by stunning Maria Sakkari 6-4 0-6 7-6(4). At moments the Greek struggled to keep the ball on the court, but more than anything the 22-year-old from New York was unrelenting. Ranked 61 in the world, she is in search of her first career title, and things are looking up with her first Top 10 victory under her belt.

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