MEDIA CREDITS: Mark J. Terrill/AP – belinda-bencic
Belinda Bencic beat fifth-seeded Karolina Pliskova 6-3, 4-6, 6-3 to reach the semis, ensuring her return to the top 20 in the rankings.
"I wouldn’t believe I win today again," Bencic said. "I’m not going to the court with any expectation. I’m just trying to play. This is the mentality I have, and this is the mentality I’m going to keep having."
Bencic was pushed to three sets for the first time in four matches at the tournament. She was coming off a straight-set upset of defending champion and top-ranked Naomi Osaka in the fourth round.
Pliskova raced to 4-1 lead before wrapping up the second set. In the third, she overcame a break point to hold at 2-all but only won one more game the rest of the way.
"Physically, it was tough somehow, and the wind didn’t help much," Pliskova said. "So my serve was bad, my shots were bad."
Bencic next plays the winner of Thursday’s match between No. 8 Angelique Kerber and Venus Williams.
Bencic improved to 18-3 this year. She won her third career title at Dubai last month and her first since 2015. The 22-year-old Swiss player missed five months in 2017 after wrist surgery.
"When you’re confident, you can really just trust your instincts and you don’t have to think about it at all," Bencic said. "I’m definitely playing how I feel it, and it’s going well so I’m not planning on changing that."
Bianca Andreescu of Mississauga, Ont., advanced to the women’s semis on Wednesday. She’ll face No. 6 seed Elina Svitolina of Ukraine on Friday.
In women’s doubles, Ottawa’s Gabriela Dabrowski was eliminated in the semifinals on Thursday. The fifth-seeded team of Dabrowski and Yifan Xu of China lost 6-2, 7-6 (5) to Elise Mertens of Belgium and Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus.
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 16:55:58 EDT