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Wozniacki dethrones Cibulkova in Moscow

Third seed Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark on Friday defeated defending champion Dominika Cibulkova of Slovakia to advance to the WTA semi-finals of the Kremlin Cup. Former world number one Wozniacki won 6-2, 6-7 (1/7), 6-1 to record her ninth win over Cibulkova, who is 14th in the WTA rankings, in their 12th head-to-head meeting.

"It was a very good match today as both of us played very well," Wozniacki said. "The difference at the end was that I could just keep my highest level up and I managed to win the most important points, especially at the beginning of the third set." The 22-year-old Dane, who is currently 11th in the world but could still break into the WTA's top 10 by season's end, broke twice in winning the opening set. The rivals traded with breaks throughout the second set, Cibulkova pulling the scores level at one set all after winning a tiebreak. But early in the deciding set, the 23-year-old Cibulkova received treatment on her bandaged right leg.

And the Slovak never fully recovered, unable to resist the power and precision of Wozniacki, who broke twice to take the set and the match on her first matchpoint. In Saturday's semi-final, Wozniacki will face Sofia Avidsson of Sweden, who saw off seventh seed Maria Kirilenko, the last Russian player in the draw, with a 6-3, 6-3 win.

In the ATP section of the event, Malek Jaziri saw off Czech Lukas Rosol in straight sets 7-6 (7/5), 6-3 to become the first Tunisian player to reach a semi-final. "I'm really happy to reach the semi-finals here," Jaziri said. "And if I'm lucky enough, why not make my first ATP final?" Jaziri will face the winner of the match between second seed Andreas Seppi of Italy and Japan's Tatsuma Ito, who was seeded eighth here, for a place in the last four. Croatian giant Ivo Karlovic also breezed into the semis, beating Frenchman Edouard Roger-Vasselin 7-6 (7/4), 6-3 to face the winner of the match between fourth seed Brazilian Thomaz Belucci and Pole Jerzy Janowicz.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2012


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