Maria Sakkari sets up Karolina Pliskova semi-final clash at Italian Open

WTA Tour
Maria Sakkari in action

Maria Sakkari and Karolina Pliskova will battle it out for a place in the Italian Open final after both came through three-setters in their quarter-final matches.

Having won the Morocco Open at the start of May, Greek Sakkari is now one two wins away from winning her second WTA Tour title as the 23-year-old came from a set down to beat Kristina Mladenovic 5-7, 6-3, 6-0 in just over two hours.

“I just sat down after I won the second set, I was like, ‘Now it’s your time, now it’s time to do what you have to do,'” Sakkari said. “Just went after my shots. Trusted myself. I think I did pretty well.”

She will face fourth seed Pliskova on Saturday after the Czech beat two-time Grand Slam winner Victoria Azarenka 6-7 (5-7), 6-2, 6-2 for her 500th career win.

“I think the last couple years I know I’m playing a lot of three-setters,” Pliskova said. “I’m not panicking if I lose first set or even the second. I’m just there. I keep fighting. I feel quite confident coming to the third set, because I know I won quite a lot in last couple of years.”

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