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Badosa shuts down Gauff to reach WTA San Jose semi-finals

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Spaniard Paula Badosa, runner-up, advanced to the semi-finals of the WTA hardcourt tournament in San Jose on Friday with a 7-6 (7/4), 6-2 victory over rising American star Coco Gauff.

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World No. 4 Badosa recovered twice from a first-set breakdown when she booked a Final Four bout against No. 7 Daria Kasatkina, who won 4-6, 7-5, 6-0 over the No. 4 seed. Arina Sobolenko.

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Gauff, the 18-year-old who reached her first Grand Slam final at this year’s French Open, scored a stunning victory over four-time Grand Slam champion Naomi Osaka on Thursday night.

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The American No. 6 appeared to capitalize on the momentum of that victory as she exited the exchange of three service breaks with a 3-2 lead in the first set on her way to a 5-3 lead.

However, after Badosa had a serve, Gauff fell apart as she served in the set, committing three double faults to drop the serve as they went to a tiebreak, which Gauff surrendered with another pair of double faults.

She looked flustered as she lost her first serve in the second set, Badosa took a 5-1 lead and confidently served the match two games later.

“It’s never easy to start against such an aggressive player with a big serve,” Badosa said. “I think I adjusted pretty well in the (late) first set and played a perfect tiebreak, so I’m very happy about that.”

The Spaniard finished with 17 winners and 15 unforced errors, converting half of her eight break chances as Gauff’s 29 unforced errors outpaced her 21 winners.

Badosa, who reached her fourth semi-final in 2022, will face Kasatkina for the third time, with both previous meetings taking place earlier this year.

Badosa beat Kasatkina in straight sets in Sydney in January, but Kasatkina won in straight sets at the clay court tournament in Rome.

“She wins a lot of matches, beats the best players in the world, she has an amazing year,” Badosa said.

Ninth-placed Veronika Kudermetova maintained her flawless record against Tunisian Ons Jaber, beating second-placed Wimbledon 7-6 (7/5), 6-2.

Kudermetova won all three meetings in a row against Zhaber.

In their last meeting, Kudermetova’s 30 winners were nearly double the 17 fifth-placed Jabers. Including half a dozen aces.

Kudermetova will face Shelby Rogers, who defeated American Amanda Anisimova 6-4, 6-4.

Rogers, ranked 45th in the world, beat world No. 3 Maria Sakkari, ranked first, in straight sets to advance to the quarter-finals.

Rodgers, who opened the tournament with a win over former US Open champion Bianca Andreescu, hasn’t broken yet this week and improved to 3-0 against Anisimova.



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