PARIS (AP) — Maria Sakkari ended defending champion Iga Swiatek's 11-match and 22-set winning streaks at the French Open on Wednesday and reached the semifinals of a major tournament for the first time.
The 17th-seeded Sakkari used strong and steady baseline play to eliminate Swiatek 6-4, 6-4 at Court Philippe Chatrier in the quarterfinals and ensure that the clay-court tournament will end with a new Grand Slam champion.
"I couldn't have done it without my team and their support and I just want to thank them and we still have a long way to go, of course," Sakkari said, "but we made a huge step today."
All four women remaining in the field are making their Slam semifinal debuts. This is only the second time in the professional era that's been the case at any major tournament, according to the WTA; there also was a quartet of first-time semifinalists at the 1978 Australian Open.
On Thursday, Sakkari plays unseeded Barbora Krejcikova, and No. 31 Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova faces unseeded Tamara Zidansek.