Former World No.1 Caroline Wozniacki backed up her tour-leading 40th win of the season with a 41st victory on Friday, dismissing Kateryna Kozlova while Caroline Garcia outlasted Barbora Krejcikova in a three-set marathon.
WTA Staff
July 28, 2017

BASTAD, Sweden - Top seed Caroline Wozniacki kept up her winning ways on Friday, dropping just four games against Ukrainian qualifier Kateryna Kozlova to advance into the Ericsson Open semifinals, 6-3, 6-1.

"I definitely played better today and kept focused the whole way through," she said during her on-court interview.

Wozniacki enjoyed stellar stats throughout the match - winning over half of her return points and saving five of six break points faced - and avoided a late-match hiccup against Kozlova after racing ahead by a set and 5-0.

"I tried to stay aggressive, even in the last couple of games when she had 40-0. I stayed with it, hitting aggressive returns and aggressive shots. It worked out."

The former No.1 became the first woman to win 40 matches in 2017 on Thursday, cementing a career renaissance that has seen her reach four finals at the Qatar Total Open, the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships, the Miami Open, and the Aegon Interational in Eastbourne.

Clay has traditionally been her least favorite surface, but the Dane has found success even on the terre battue, upsetting 2009 French Open champion Svetlana Kuznetsova en route to the last eight in Paris, and now finds herself two wins from her first title of the year.

Standing between her and the championship match will be Elise Mertens; Mertens reached her first clay court final back in April at the TEB BNP Paribas Istanbul Cup, and took out Aleksandra Krunic in a three set tussle, 6-4, 2-6, 6-4.

"I haven't played either of them before, but I know they both like to play on clay. I'm just excited for another challenge," she said, before thanking fans in Danish.

Earlier in the day, No.3 seed Caroline Garcia won the last three games of a titanic struggle against Czech qualifier Barbora Krejcikova to win, 6-2, 4-6, 7-5.

"I started well, but things got complicated," she told the crowd after her win. "She changed her game a little bit and I couldn't find my rhythm again. I just kept fighting to the end; my game is to be aggressive, so that's what I was trying to do. It wasn't always great but I'm very happy with the win."

Garcia led by a set and a break before Krejcikova turned the tables to level the match, and made it through six straight service breaks to find herself serving for the match in the tenth game.

"I had a lot of opportunities on her serve in the second and third sets. She kept fighting and I lost my focus; we know in tennis that things can go very fast one way or the other. I just tried to stay calm."

The Frenchwoman promptly broke from there and sealed the victory in two hours and 12 minutes behind 44 winners to 35 unforced errors - not to mention 10 aces.

Into her fourth semifinal of the season, up next for Garcia is No.7 seed Katerina Siniakova, who won a thriller of her own against No.2 seed Anastasija Sevastova, 6-3, 5-7, 7-5.

"Both times against Siniakova went three sets. We're close to the end now and everyone wants to go to the final. I will have to play my best."