GSTAAD, Switzerland - Top seed Alizé Cornet continued her march through the draw at the Ladies' Championship Gstaad on Friday, defeating No.5 seed Samantha Stosur in a quarterfinal match between the last remaining seeds, 6-4, 7-6(2).
The World No.48 snapped a four-match losing streak against Stosur dating back to 2012, and scored her first victory over the Aussie since 2009. The victory moves Cornet into her first WTA semifinal this year, and first since the Brisbane International to begin 2017, where she reached the final.
"Sam is always tough to play because she puts so much spin in her shots and she has a huge serve," Cornet said after the match. "I'm very glad to be through in two sets. I didn't beat her many times in my career...so I'm very glad I did it here."
Cornet appeared to be cruising towards the final four as she won five of the first six games of the match, and later led the former US Open champion by a set and a break, but she needed to fend off a fight back from the 34-year-old in both sets.
After holding for a 5-1 lead in the opener, Cornet lost three straight games and 12 of the next 14 points without ever reaching set point, as Stosur held twice to love over that span.
However, the Frenchwoman came through in the clutch in the 10th game of the set after Stosur put the pressure on, pegging her back from 30-0 to 30-30, and won her first set against the former World No.4 in four years.
It was more of the same in the second set, as Stosur rebounded from an early 3-1 deficit to stay even with the top seed over the course of it.
Stosur saved a total of six break points in the second set - including two in the first game and two which would've seen her trail 4-1 had Cornet converted - and she again won three straight games to take the lead after seven were played.
Nonetheless, Cornet responded when Stosur raised her level, continually holding serve and never allowing the World No.73 a break point in the set's late stages.
Though Stosur again proved clutch as she saved another break point at 4-4 which would've seen Cornet serve for the match, she was unable to push through the tiebreak, losing the first three and last three points.
The World No.48 will next face former Wimbledon finalist Eugenie Bouchard, with the other semifinal seeing Mandy Minella take on Czech teenager Marketa Vondrousova.
"I saw her play a couple of matches this week and she's playing much better, but [I am] too," Cornet said. "It's going to be a good game and we'll see how it's going to go. It's not going to be the same kind of opponent as today, so I'll have to change my tactics, but I'm ready for everything.
"Genie was very aggressive this week, especially on the return. I saw she was hitting very hard and hitting much flatter than Sam is. I'll have to be really ready physically and ready for a big battle."