US Open semifinalist Caroline Wozniacki continued her climb back up the rankings beating qualifier Magda Linette 6-4, 6-3 to reach the last four at the Tokyo event.
The former No. 1 will meet fellow former champion Agnieszka Radwanska in the semifinals after the Pole ousted Olympic gold medalist Monica Puig 6-2, 6-3.
“We’ve played many times before, and again she’s a close friend,” Wozniacki said. “It’s going to be another tough one because she’s been playing well this week, but I’m just happy to be in the semifinals again.”
Wozniacki has won 8 of 12 from Radwanska including the last three in straight sets. But this is their first meeting of the year.
In the other semifinal, teen and Tokyo favorite Naomi Osaka will battle Elina Svitolina. Svitolina beat top seed Garbine Muguruza 6-2, 4-6, 6-3.
“It was a great performance from me and I think we both played really well,” Svitolina said of her win over the Spaniard. “In the second and third sets it was great tennis and I hope everyone enjoyed this match.
“It was pretty consistent tennis. I was playing really well from the first point. Maybe Garbiñe didn’t expect this but it was a great match and I’m really happy that it finished my way!”
The 18-year-old Osaka is appearing in her first career WTA semifinal.
In Guangzhou, Jelena Jankovic will try to defend her 2015 title against Lesia Tsurenko of the Ukraine.
“I’m very happy to be in the final here again in Guangzhou,” said Jankovic after defeating US Open quarterfinalist Ana Konjuh 7-5, 7-6. “I’m happy with my win today, and I look forward to playing tomorrow in the final and hopefully defending my title from last year.
“It was very tough. My performance was good, but I thought my opponent played so well; she was hitting the ball so hard, and she’s one of the players who has the heaviest and most powerful ball. It was difficult for me to hit back and play my game. I was trying to fight, get as many balls back, and be as aggressive as I could when I had the chance. I’m happy I was able to win in the end because it was a really difficult game.”
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