Published: Sat, June 09, 2018
Sports | By Brett Lawson

Djokovic stunned; Keys, Stephens set-up all American semis

Djokovic stunned; Keys, Stephens set-up all American semis

Sloane Stephens of the United States celebrates after beating Madison Keys in their semi-final match on day twelve of The Roland Garros 2018 French Open tennis tournament in Paris on June 7, 2018. And I think for a lot of young players coming up, they follow what other people do for them or tell them.

"Ekaterina and I have shared great success as a team, and this moment is what we've always dreamed of", Vesnina said.

She won on her first match point with a backhand victor down the line. She did just that, with the help of a sumptuous backhand drop shot.

Halep is a three-time Grand Slam runner-up, including in Paris in 2014 and previous year; Kerber is a two-time major champ elsewhere; Muguruza won the French Open in 2016 and Wimbledon in 2017; and Sharapova owns five Grand Slam titles, including at Roland Garros in 2012 and 2014.

But Keys had the nous and consistency to keep the pressure on her opponent and broke in the seventh game of the second set before going on to win 7-6 (7/5) 6-4. Whilst for Kasatkina this is a first quarterfinal at a Grand Slam, her best previous result being reaching the fourth round in NY a year ago, Stephens is a Major victor.

Either she or Sloane Stephens, the 2017 US Open victor, is now set to depart this year's French Open as the top-ranked American on the court - a title that only three different players have owned since 2007. And then when we get on the court, it's time to compete.

Despite her disappointment in Paris, Keys moves into the top 10 of the rankings, one spot behind Venus.

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"Obviously she's No. 1 in the world".

I feel like this year especially I have been finding the balance of being a little bit more patient but also playing my game, whereas before I feel like I would go too far one way. Its just how its happened for me, ” Stephens said, “I think once I get going in a tournament, Im pretty consistent, which is good.

Stephens lost her serve for the first time against Keys when serving for the match at 5-2. And in the second set was the same. "So to be here from there, I think is rewarding, because those times were not easy".

That Rafael Nadal reached a record 11th French Open semifinal, closing in on his 11th championship at Roland Garros, was hardly surprising.

But before she withdrew from Rome, there was a noticeable calmness to Keys, who was flying solo there, without a coach, having split with Dieter Kindlmann, who had been traveling with her for a year, since they teamed up in May 2017.

"I'm just not thinking about tennis at the moment". This year, she was two points from defeat in the third round against Camila Giorgi of Italy before turning that match around. "It's 'go time.' Until then, we're the same girls as always".

"During treatment yesterday I had Sloane on and was living and dying on every point in the end".

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