Slammin’ Semi: Kvitova Eyes Third Final in Three Years


By Nick McCarvel | Photo by Billie Weiss/Connecticut Open

At the Connecticut Open presented by United Technologies it’s semifinal Friday as the singles and doubles draws will pick their finalists on Stadium Court. Can Petra Kvitova make her third title tilt in three years? It’s not going to be easy.

Magdalena Rybarikova (SVK) vs. Camila Giorgi (ITA)
Stadium Court, 1pm – ESPN2
Both Rybarikova and Giorgi have had big upsets so far this week, the Slovakian taking out No. 1 seed and defending champion Simona Halep while Giorgi beat four-time Connecticut Open winner Caroline Wozniacki in straight sets. Both players followed said wins up with three-set victories, and will meet for the first time in their careers on Friday.

MORE: Updated Draws | Friday Order of Play | Ticket Information

“Giorgi is playing amazing,” said the world No. 68. “It’s very tough to play against Giorgi because she’s hitting very hard the ball. If she’s playing good, it’s very tough to beat her.”

“I don’t know her [style],” said Giorgi, who is ranked No. 38. “I just think about me, my game. I will concentrate like always. I don’t think about the game of the opponent.”

[2] Petra Kvitova (CZE) vs. [WC] Sam Stosur (AUS)
Stadium Court, 7pm – ESPN2
The blockbuster match of the day will come in the night session, where two former Grand Slam winners meet in a Connecticut semifinal. Both Kvitova and Stosur have fought through challenges this week, the two-time Wimbledon champion not dropping a set in two matches while Stosur, winner at the US Open in 2011, has captured two out of her three victories in three sets, including a 6-3, 4-6, 6-3 effort against Kirsten Flipkens in the quarterfinals.

Kvitova has a 10-2 record here overall, winning in 2012 and making the final a year ago, when she lost to Halep. She brings a 5-1 record against Stosur, including 4-0 in hard courts. Three of those six matches have gone to three sets.

“I’ve got to go out there and try to play aggressive,” said Stosur, the world No. 25. “I can’t go out there and be passive against someone like Petra. She hits the ball very, very well. She goes after her shots. You know, once she’s in control of the point, it makes things very difficult to turn it around. It’s important to try to get that first strike in.”

MORE: 5 Minutes With… Sam Stosur

Doubles Semifinals
Darija Jurak/Megan Moulton-Levy vs. Andreja Klepac/Silvia Soler-Espinosa
Stadium Court, Second match after 1pm
No seeds remain in the doubles draws, as four teams of experienced players have made their way through. Moulton-Levy is the sole American left in either the singles or doubles draw, she and partner Jurak beating the No. 4 seeds to start before taking out the all-American duo of Alison Riske and Coco Vandeweghe in the quarterfinals.

Caroline Garcia/Monica Niculescu vs. Marina Erakovic/Arantxa Parra Santoja
Stadium Court, Second match after 7pm
Garcia/Niculescu were responsible for taking down the top seeds of Cara Black and Sania Mirza in the quarterfinals on Thursday, winning that match in straight sets. Erakovic/Prra Santoja pose a tough challenge, however as both teams combine for a ranking around 80.

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