Madison Keys puts friendship aside to beat Sloane Stephens as Caroline Wozniacki also wins
Madison Keys is finally on the scoreboard in the head-to-head battle against Sloane Stephens after she beat the former US Open winner at the Volvo Car Open.
Stephens had won their previous three encounters, but Keys got the better of her friend in the quarter-final in Charleston with a 7-6 (8-6), 4-6, 6-2 victory in over two hours.
.@Madison_Keys earns her first win over Stephens, 7-6(6), 4-6, 6-2!
— WTA (@WTA) April 5, 2019
Both players struggled on their serve as there were 13 breaks in total, but Keys managed to get her act together in the decider as she broke three times.
“It’s always hard to play a friend, so on that side of it you’re obviously not going to be saying ‘come on’ in each others’ faces or anything like that,” she said. “But, I mean, we’ve been friends forever. So if she circles a mark and says it’s out, I’m going to believe her.”
She will face Olympic champion Monica Puig for a place in the final after the Puerto Rican beat American Danielle Collins 6-3, 6-2.
The other semi-final will see former world No 1 Caroline Wozniacki up against Petra Matric.
Fifth seed Wozniacki produced some of her best tennis this year as she downed Maria Sakkari 6-2, 6-2.
— WTA (@WTA) April 5, 2019
Matric upset Dubai champion Belinda Bencic 6-3, 6-4.
“It’s definitely going to be tough. She’s playing well,” Wozniacki said of a Croatian opponent. “She’s been playing well on this surface and this tournament so far. We practiced earlier this week. She has that big kick. She has a good serve, forehand, likes to run around it, mix it up with the backhand. So I need to be ready from every point.”
More from Tennis365:
WTA top 10 prize-money earners in 2022: Iga Swiatek well clear as Ons Jabeur, Jessica Pegula also feature
Iga Swiatek laughing all the way to the bank after brilliant 2022 season.
WATCH: Emma Raducanu inspires next generation during ‘tennis masterclass’ with school pupils
Emma Raducanu giving back.
Roger Federer not ready for skiing holiday, but wants to take his kids on adventurous African trip
Roger Federer eyeing an adventurous African holiday.
Felix Auger-Aliassime and Denis Shapovalov come full circle: ‘It’s cool to be in this position now’
From Junior Davis Cup champions to Senior Davis Cup champions.
How Cameron Norrie aims to become a tougher player to face
Cameron Norrie is tough to break down, but he feels he can make life even harder for his opponents.
Cameron Norrie hoping Saudi jaunt sets him up for Australian Open
Cameron Norrie is looking forward to seeing the sun again.
Alexander Zverev has made peace with his injury layoff
Alexander Zverev is at peace over his French Open injury saying at least it didn’t happen snowboarding.
Alexander Zverev heads to Saudi Arabia for competition and comradery
Alexander Zverev is thrilled to get the chance to get back on court and rub shoulders with the boys again.
Novak Djokovic snub for top award irks his fans, but analyst insists ‘Novak is not a great sport on court’
Novak Djokovic fans are unhappy that he was left off the list of nominees.
Lleyton Hewitt tried to get Nick Kyrgios to play Davis Cup, but world No 22 ‘about to go to Saudi for six figures’
Nick Kyrgios preparing for his big payday in Saudia Arabia.