PARIS: Reigning women’s champion Iga Swiatek continued her ruthless demolition of French Open opponents Tuesday as she stormed into the semi-finals, while Carlos Alcaraz and Stefanos Tsitsipas square off in a repeat of last year’s quarter-final.

Swiatek thrashed Wimbledon champion Marketa Vondrousova 6-0, 6-2 to set up a last-four showdown with American third seed Coco Gauff, the player she beat in the 2022 Roland Garros final.

World number one Swiatek improved her career record in Paris to 33-2 and is on course to become the first woman to lift the Coupe Suzanne Lenglen three years in a row since Justine Henin in 2005-07.

After Swiatek’s 40-minute rout of Anastasia Potapova in the last 16, the only consolation for Vondrousova was her snapping the Pole’s incredible run of 20 consecutive games won early in the second set.

“Honestly I think everything worked,” said the 23-year-old Swiatek. “I felt like I was in the zone today.”

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Since saving a match point against Naomi Osaka in round two, Swiatek has looked every bit the tournament favourite and goes into her semi-final with Gauff having won 10 of their 11 meetings, all in straight sets.

Gauff has come up short against Swiatek in four attempts on clay and was beaten by the top seed on her way to the title in Rome last month.

“You don’t want to change your routines. Not to put too much baggage on your shoulders, just treat it like any other match and not something huge,” said Swiatek.

“Against Coco it’s not easy, she really likes playing on clay especially here, I think so I’ll just focus on myself.”

Gauff passed her toughest test of the fortnight as she fought back from a set down to beat three-time Grand Slam finalist Ons Jabeur 4-6, 6-2, 6-3.

The 20-year-old Gauff is set for a third straight Grand Slam semi-final, after also making the last four at the Australian Open.

Tunisian eighth seed Jabeur is still waiting for a maiden major title, having lost three finals and four quarter-finals.

Alcaraz holds sway over Tsitsipas

Alcaraz appears to be moving through the gears in Paris after an injury-hit preparation, taking care of 21st seed Felix Auger-Aliassime with minimal fuss Sunday to make the last eight here for the third year on the trot.

Next up is an opponent he has dominated in his young career, winning all five previous encounters with Tsitsipas. Three of those have come on clay, including Alcaraz’s straight-sets win in the 2023 French Open quarter-finals.

“I’m really looking forward to playing this match. I love this challenge and these kind of matches,” said the 21-year-old Spaniard, attempting to add to his Wimbledon title from a year ago and the 2022 US Open.

“I have seen a lot of matches from Stefanos lately. He has a lot of confidence right now and is playing great tennis. I think I have the key against him so I will try to make him in trouble.”

Tsitsipas found himself in danger of falling two sets behind against Italy’s Matteo Arnaldi in the last 16, saving four set points before swinging the match in his favour.

The Greek ninth seed, who lost the 2021 French Open final in five sets to Novak Djokovic, hopes to put a stop to Alcaraz’s dominance.

“He has said in the past he likes playing against me, so I hope he gets to like it a little bit less this time,” said Tsitsipas.

Jannik Sinner dropped his first set of the tournament against Corentin Moutet, but the second seed quickly righted the ship to ease into a seventh Grand Slam quarter-final.

It is the first time he has made the last eight at Roland Garros since the pandemic-delayed 2020 edition, when he was beaten by Rafael Nadal in a match that finished at 1:26am.

That had stood as the record for the latest ending at the French Open prior to Djokovic’s 3:07am conclusion against Lorenzo Musetti in the early hours of Sunday.

Sinner next plays Grigor Dimitrov, the 10th seed from Bulgaria who is set for his first Roland Garros quarter-final on his 14th visit.


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