Daria Kasatkina aims to climb another "mountain" when she faces Iga Swiatek in her first grand slam semi-final at the French Open.

Kasatkina won an all-Russian showdown with Veronika Kudermetova on Court Philippe-Chatrier 6-4 7-6 (7-5) to break new ground at a major on Wednesday.

The 20th seed had lost her previous two grand slam quarter-finals in 2018, but she was not denied on this occasion in Paris.

Kasatkina will do battle with Swiatek for a place in the Roland Garros final on Thursday after the world number one beat Jessica Pegula in straight sets.

Top seed Swiatek has beaten Kasatkina twice in hard-court events this year and the Pole is on an astonishing 33-match winning run.

Yet Kasatkina has not dropped a set at the French Open and the 25-year-old is relishing the challenge of playing the biggest match of her career.

She said: "We played a few times this year. Okay, I lost those matches, but it was a different story. It was a hard court, beginning of the year, I was not in the same shape as I am now.

"I cannot compare what we are going to have tomorrow and what we had in February, March when we were playing. It's going to be completely different match. I want to win a lot, she wants to win as well, and it's going to be a good match.

"You never know what's going to happen in the semi-final of a grand slam, so it's going to be fun and that's it."

Kasatkina will savour her best performance at a major, but is hungry for more.

"I have no time to relax, I'm playing already tomorrow. So a little bit of time to enjoy it, because still it's special for me, a first semi-final," she added.

"But I know that tomorrow is another mountain in front of me which I have to climb and that's it. Maybe it's even better that I don't have much time to think about how good it is to be in the semi-finals, so I have another battle."

As she prepares to face the all-conquering tournament favourite, Kasatkina does not believe she has ever been in better shape.

She said: "Mentally and physically I feel the best I ever was, which is good, because it means that I'm improving. But I don't feel safe, because when you're in the comfort zone it means there's something wrong.

"I think it's better to feel something behind you, so you don't relax much. I think I'm always ready, you have to be always be ready.

"It doesn't have to be like, 'Oh, I'm so bad, and what do I have to do now?' But if you are ready and you know how to get out of this, this is also what I learn."

Iga Swiatek is enjoying a birthday week to remember – or perhaps one to forget.

The world number one turned 21 on Tuesday, between the 32nd and 33rd matches of a remarkable winning streak.

Having won five consecutive tournaments heading into the French Open, there was plenty for Swiatek to celebrate even before her big day.

So perhaps she can be forgiven for losing track of her age in the moments after her latest win against Jessica Pegula on Wednesday.

Having carried out her on-court media duties, Swiatek wrote a message on one of the Roland Garros cameras with the hashtag "#22".

"No, wait," the 21-year-old said just as she prepared to step away, covering her face with embarrassment. "I forgot how old I am!"

A failed attempt to wipe off the incorrect number resulted in Swiatek instead crossing out her message and scribbling "#21" next to it – far more untidy than any display she has turned in at Roland Garros.

Iga Swiatek showed no signs of slowing as she reached the French Open semi-finals with a straight-sets victory over Jessica Pegula, her 33rd in succession.

The 2020 Roland Garros champion entered this year's event in imperious form, having become the fourth woman this century to win five consecutive tournaments on the WTA Tour.

And the day after her 21st birthday, Swiatek took another stride towards extending that streak to six, swatting aside Pegula 6-3 6-2 in the last eight.

Only Daria Kasatkina – against whom she has won three in a row, including the second match in this remarkable run of victories – now lies between the world number one and yet another final.

The early signs were predictably ominous for Pegula as Swiatek broke immediately, although a sloppy first service game followed and saw the Pole collapse from 40-up to level the scores when she thrashed a forehand into the net cord.

Pegula then stuck with Swiatek for a period, but her opponent's class soon came to the fore again as she sensationally scrambled to beat the second bounce from a drop shot and squeeze a return over the net to restore her lead at 4-3.

That was the first of five successive Swiatek games as she wrapped up the set at the second attempt on Pegula's serve – the American committing five unforced errors in that game alone.

That sequence was interrupted by a gutsy Pegula hold, only for Swiatek to defend her own serve in the next game to remain in the ascendancy before breaking for the first time in the second with a brilliant backhand down the line.

Pegula kept battling, but she was only temporarily able to hold up Swiatek at the finish line, a seven-minute game ended by a stunning winner to break again and reach the semis.

Data Slam: Pegula no match for number one

Pegula's only previous meeting with a current number one saw her thrashed in straight sets by Ash Barty at the Australian Open. Swiatek has succeeded Barty at the top of the rankings following her retirement and has since surpassed the Aussie's dominance, now winning 16 in a row as number one.

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS
Swiatek – 30/28
Pegula – 16/27

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS
Swiatek – 4/0
Pegula – 2/1

BREAK POINTS WON
Swiatek – 5/11
Pegula – 1/2

Daria Kasatkina is through to her first grand slam semi-final after winning an all-Russian battle with Veronika Kudermetova in straight sets at the French Open.

Kasatkina lost her previous two major quarter-finals in 2018, but she broke new ground with a 6-4 7-6 (7-5) victory at Roland Garros on Wednesday.

The 20th seed will face Iga Swiatek or Jessica Pegula for a place in the final after ending Kudermetova's best run at a grand slam.

Kudermetova paid the price for 50 unforced errors in her maiden major quarter-final on Court Philippe-Chatrier, where Kasatkina overcame the nerves to move into the last four.

It was Kudermetova who drew first blood when she broke to lead 3-1, but she failed to consolidate as a tenacious Kasatkina responded immediately.

The two 25-year-olds both fended off a couple of break points in their next service games, but Kasatkina edged in front for the first time courtesy of a sublime cross-court winner to take a 5-4 lead after a terrible miss from Kudermetova with the court wide open.

A steely Kasatkina was moving superbly and served out the set, before moving into a 3-1 lead in the second set after three consecutive games went against the serve.

The 29th seed was struggling to find her rhythm, but she was level at 4-4 when her compatriot overcooked a forehand.

Kasatkina had looked edgy in that service game, yet she had an opportunity to serve for the match when a Kudermetova backhand struck the net cord and landed on her side of the net.

A nervy Kasatkina was unable to serve it out but held to force a tie-break after Kudermetova called for treatment on her left foot.

Kasatkina took a 6-1 lead in the breaker following a string of errors from Kudermetova and finally finished it off with her fifth match point, executing a drop shot to perfection.

Data Slam: No setbacks for Kasatkina in Paris

Kasatkina has not only put together her longest run in a grand slam, she has done so without dropping a set. While it was certainly not all plain sailing in the quarter-final, she showed her strength of character to come through another test in straight sets.

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS
Kasatkina – 16/25
Kudermetova – 38/50

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS
Kasatkina – 0/3
Kudermetova – 3/2

BREAK POINTS WON
Kasatkina – 5/17
Kudermetova – 4/7

Coco Gauff has finally shed the burden of comparisons to Serena Williams and is enjoying herself at the French Open, where she considers a dual singles-doubles run "light work".

Gauff has long been identified as a future WTA Tour superstar and enjoyed a breakout season in 2019 as a 15-year-old.

The American reached the fourth round at Wimbledon and third round at the US Open, before again advancing to round four at the Australian Open at the start of 2020.

Yet only now, at Roland Garros, has Gauff advanced to a singles grand slam semi-final after beating compatriot Sloane Stephens on Tuesday.

Still just 18, she is the fifth woman this century to reach the last four at the French Open before turning 19.

Crucially, too, Gauff is enjoying herself, having struggled to celebrate wins previously as she believed her early-career hype.

"Even at eight years old, [I was] 'the next Serena', 'next this', 'next that', and I think I really fell into the trap of believing that," the teenager said.

"Yeah, it's important that you have high hopes for yourself, but also, at the same time, it's important to be in reality – and I think that's where I am.

"I'm in reality, where I'm enjoying the moment and enjoying the situation.

"I felt like I was to the point where even when I made the second week or beat Naomi [Osaka] at the Australian Open, I remember like I was happy but I wasn't that happy, because I was like 'I feel like that's what I should do'.

"Now, I'm really appreciating each win and loss."

Indeed, Gauff claims she is no longer "looking at the finish line", even considering her upcoming semi-final against Martina Trevisan "just another match".

And "mentally", Gauff says, she is "in a great place".

"I feel like a lot of my losses in the past were due to mental errors of just getting used to being on tour and getting used to playing these intense matches," she explained, adding that now: "I know if I do lose a match it's not going to be because of that.

"I'm okay if it is because of my game, because that's something that I can work on."

That is the plan heading into the Trevisan match, with her only previous meeting with the Italian a defeat at this event two years ago.

Gauff has already shown how she can adjust following defeats, responding to her first loss to Naomi Osaka at Flushing Meadows in 2019 by beating her at the very next major. Before defeating Stephens this week, Gauff's only previous clash with her was a loss at the 2021 US Open.

"I think it gives me confidence," she said. "Losing to Sloane at US Open and [winning] here, and then losing to Naomi [and then winning], and I lost to Trevisan, so I'm hoping the trend keeps going.

"I think that it helps, because I feel like I know what's going on on the court and I know why I lost the match, and I know what I need to work on for the next time.

"I remember each loss pretty well. I mean, my grandfather always told me: forget your wins; remember your losses. I remember each and every loss.

"So when I play the second time, I try not to lose; at least if I'm going to lose, try not to lose the same way I did the first time."

Even before that match on Thursday, though, Gauff has a doubles quarter-final alongside Jessica Pegula on Wednesday.

"If I felt like I couldn't give 100 per cent in both singles and doubles, then I wouldn't play doubles," Gauff said. "But I feel like I can give 100 per cent all the way to the end.

"The intention for me when I enter the tournament is to try my best to win both. So I know going into that, I'm going to be playing double matches in some days.

"For me, really, I'm used to it; playing juniors, we would play three matches in a day. So this is light work."

Novak Djokovic conceded he went down to the better player on the day, losing to Rafael Nadal in the French Open quarter-finals on Tuesday.

Nadal defeated the world number one 6-2 4-6 6-2 7-6 (7-4) and moved to an 8-2 record over 10 matches between the two while also progressing to his 15th semi-final at Roland Garros.

Djokovic has accounted for two of Nadal's three losses over his career at the French Open but looked second best throughout, specifically in the crunch moments.

The first-seeded Serbian did not hide from that fact, praising the 21-time Grand Slam winner on the victory after quickly walking off Court Philippe-Chatrier and to his post-match news conference.

"Congratulations to Nadal. He was a better player I think in important moments," Djokovic said afterwards. "I didn't start so great, 2-6, 0-3, double-break down. I was gaining momentum as I was coming back in the second set, managed to win the second set, and I thought, I'm back in the game.

"I had my chances. I had my chances in the fourth [set]. Served for the set, couple set points. Just one or two shots could have taken me into a fifth. Then it's really anybody's match."

After claiming the third set with a stunning fightback, winning four consecutive games, Djokovic looked in a good spot to take the match to a deciding set.

While Djokovic's unforced error count piled up - coming up with 53 for the match - Nadal dug deep and broke back in the ninth game, displaying incredible defence and point management from the back of the court against a familiar rival.

Having missed his chance, Djokovic failed to regain momentum from there, with Nadal going up five match points in the fourth-set tie-break before closing out.

"I gave my best. I know I could have played better," Djokovic said. "I'm proud of fighting and staying until the last shot. As I said, I lost to a better player today. Had my chances. Didn't use them. That's it. Over four hours' battle and I have to accept this defeat."

"Then he had another two, three fantastic games at the beginning of the third. He was just able to take his tennis to another level in those, particularly moments at the beginning of all sets except the fourth…. he showed why he's a great champion.

"Staying mentally tough and finishing the match the way he did. Congrats to him and his team. No doubt he deserved it."

Rafael Nadal insists he does not know which match will be his last at Roland Garros, but said it is the most important place of his career after defeating Novak Djokovic on Tuesday to reach his 15th French Open semi-final.

The 13-time winner at Roland Garros progressed in spectacular fashion in what was suggested could be his last match on Court Philippe-Chatrier, beating the world number one in four sets 6-2 4-6 6-2 7-6 (7-4).

The 35-year-old will now face Alexander Zverev, who defeated teenage Spanish sensation Carlos Alcaraz earlier on Tuesday.

Nadal made it known how significant Roland Garros has been to him and his career after securing the win, but teased over the prospects of a return.

"Without a doubt, there is no other place like this one for me," Nadal said post-match. "It's the most important court of my tennis career, the most special one.

"For me, to feel the love of everyone here in Paris in the most important place of my career, it means everything to me.

"See you in two days, that's the only thing that I can say."

Nadal was largely in control against the world number one, displaying a unique familiarity with the Serbian's game at critical points.

After Djokovic looked set to push the game to a deciding fifth set, Nadal dug deep and broke back in a monumental ninth game. He had all the momentum in the fourth-set tie-break, holding five match points at one stage before closing out.

The 21-time Grand Slam winner nevertheless asserted how tough an opponent Djokovic is, bringing out his best in what could be a last French Open.

"I've been in a very, very tough match," he said afterwards. "Novak is one of the best players in history, without a doubt, so always playing against him is an amazing challenge.

"All the history that we have together, today was another one and to win against Novak, there is only one way to play - at your best from the first point until the last.

"Tonight had been one of these magic nights for me. An unexpected level, but I'm super happy."

Rafael Nadal spectacularly progressed to a 15th French Open semi-final, defeating Novak Djokovic in four sets 6-2 4-6 6-2 7-6 (7-4) on Tuesday.

Nadal had lost to Djokovic on only two of their past nine meetings at Roland Garros, and the 13-time French Open winner raced out the blocks as he twice broke the world number one to claim a 4-1 first-set lead.

The Spaniard swiftly secured the first set on Court Philippe-Chatrier and opened with another break after a mammoth 17-point game, which Nadal eventually won on his seventh break point.

Djokovic faltered again on his next service to fall 3-0 down but immediately made amends by breaking Nadal consecutively to fight back for control.

Nadal had a chance to take the set to 5-5, but was broken after pushing his shot long and the Serbian ultimately triumphed in the second set in an hour and 24 minutes.

Nadal then responded by taking the third set in stunning fashion, seemingly cruising to take it 6-2.

Djokovic regained a semblance of control early in the fourth set but was crucially broken back in the ninth game as the crowd urged on Nadal, who built momentum and started hitting flatter.

It was a critical point in the match and Nadal displayed incredible capacity to turn defence into attack, while unforced errors crept into the first seed's game.

On his third attempt in the game, Nadal finally secured the break with a sumptuous off-forehand, punishing Djokovic who dropped the ball short.

Suggesting this could be his last game at Roland Garros, the 35-year-old played with profound determination and assertiveness, taking the fourth-set tie-break 7-4.

Data slam: The King of Clay reigns over Djokovic

With Tuesday's win in four sets, Nadal moved to an 8-2 record over 10 matches at Roland Garros against the world number one.

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS

Nadal – 57/43
Djokovic – 48/53

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS

Nadal – 3/4
Djokovic – 5/4

BREAK POINTS WON

Nadal – 7/17
Djokovic – 4/12

Rafael Nadal spectacularly progressed to a 15th French Open semi-final, defeating Novak Djokovic in four sets 6-2 4-6 6-2 7-6 (7-4) on Tuesday.

Nadal had lost to Djokovic on only two of their past nine meetings at Roland Garros, and the 13-time French Open winner raced out the blocks as he twice broke the world number one to claim a 4-1 first-set lead.

The Spaniard swiftly secured the first set on Court Philippe-Chatrier and opened with another break after a mammoth 17-point game, which Nadal eventually won on his seventh break point.

Djokovic faltered again on his next service to fall 3-0 down but immediately made amends by breaking Nadal consecutively to fight back for control.

Nadal had a chance to take the set to 5-5, but was broken after pushing his shot long and the Serbian ultimately triumphed in the second set in an hour and 24 minutes.

Nadal then responded by taking the third set in stunning fashion, seemingly cruising to take it 6-2.

Djokovic regained a semblance of control early in the fourth set but was crucially broken back in the ninth game as the crowd urged on Nadal, who built momentum and started hitting flatter.

It was a critical point in the match and Nadal displayed incredible capacity to turn defence into attack, while unforced errors crept into the first seed's game.

On his third attempt in the game, Nadal finally secured the break with a sumptuous off-forehand, punishing Djokovic who dropped the ball short.

Suggesting this could be his last game at Roland Garros, the 35-year-old played with profound determination and assertiveness, taking the fourth-set tie-break 7-4.

Data slam: The King of Clay reigns over Djokovic

With Tuesday's win in four sets, Nadal moved to an 8-2 record over 10 matches at Roland Garros against the world number one.

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS

Nadal – 57/43
Djokovic – 48/53

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS

Nadal – 3/4
Djokovic – 5/4

BREAK POINTS WON

Nadal – 7/17
Djokovic – 4/12

Carlos Alcaraz was philosophical after his French Open elimination at the hands of Alexander Zverev, adamant he has no need to blow it out of proportion.

Despite being seeded three places below Zverev, the 19-year-old Spaniard went into their quarter-final as many people's favourite.

But after a slow start that Zverev punished, Alcaraz's second grand slam quarter-final proved a learning curve.

Zverev ultimately won 6-4 6-4 4-6 7-6 (9-7) to clinch his maiden top-10 scalp at a grand slam, though the German acknowledged he managed to end the contest just as Alcaraz was starting to take charge.

As such, the sixth seed felt there were plenty of reasons to feel positive about his tournament.

"I would say I finished the match playing better," he said. "I leave the court, leave the tournament with the head very high. I fight until the last ball. I fought until the last second of the match, and I'm proud of it.

"I have to take the lesson today. It was a tough match and close match I think. I could say I didn't start well, and in this level, quarter-final of a grand slam, you are playing against the best players in the world, so you have to start the match better than I did today.

"I have to improve to the next grand slam or next matches. But I would say I'm not far away to reach a semi-final or be able to win a grand slam.

"I would say I have the level, I have the confidence to win a grand slam or pass through to the semi-final next time.

"I mean, this match is not going to be tough for me or I'm going to say I'm disappointed for this match. I'm just going to try to take the positive things of the match, and of course the bad things that I did, to improve to the next matches or next tournaments or next grand slams.

"I could say I was close to a good match, close to a fifth set, and in the fifth set everything could happen.

"This was my second quarter-final in a grand slam, and I think I fight until the last ball and hope to the next grand slam, next quarter-final that I play in a grand slam, [hope to] do it better and to my chances to pass to the semi-finals."

Alexander Zverev said he was "s******* my pants" as he attempted to stave off a fightback from Carlos Alcaraz in his French Open quarter-final win on Tuesday.

Zverev claimed an impressive 6-4 6-4 4-6 7-6 (9-7) win over the 19-year-old Spaniard to set up a semi-final with either Novak Djokovic or Rafael Nadal.

The German initially appeared dominant as his controlled and composed display saw him take a two-set lead, and although Alcaraz did improve in the third, Zverev even had the opportunity to serve out the match for a straight-sets win.

He failed to grasp that chance and Alcaraz looked likely to level the match as he began to exert greater control in rallies – his dropshots proving especially threatening.

But Zverev clung on even as the crowd vociferously backed his opponent in the fourth-set tie-break, eventually seizing his opportunity when he felt Alcaraz was potentially taking charge of the match.

Asked about his emotions in a fourth set that was something of a rollercoaster, he said: "[I was] s******* my pants as well."

The rather crude joke received a flat response from a Court Philippe-Chatrier crowd that never particularly got behind Zverev.

However, he soon waxed lyrical about his popular opponent, who was the first top-10 scalp of Zverev's career at a grand slam.

"At the end of the day, I knew I had to play my absolute best tennis from the start, and I'm happy I did that," Zverev continued.

"He kept on coming back, he's an incredible player. I told him at the net that he's going to win this tournament a lot of times, not only once.

"So I hope I can win it before he starts beating us all and we'll have no chance at all."

Zverev suggested his dip after the second set was contributed to by the changing conditions, having thrived in the sun and then seen his level drop when in the shade.

But he could not hide his joy at avoiding a fifth set.

"For me, when it's shady and slower it's not perfect for me," he said. "I didn't get broken once when it was sunny, the ball was a lot faster, I had to adjust my strings as well.

"The match was turning his way, so at the end of the day I'm extremely happy I won the tie-break and I didn't have to play a five-set match, didn't have to be disappointed after the five-set match again like I was last year.

"I'm still in the tournament – usually I'm a very good talker, but right now I can't talk. I'm speechless."

Alexander Zverev beat a top-10 player at a grand slam for the first time in his career as he defeated one of the pre-French Open favourites Carlos Alcaraz to reach the semi-finals.

Despite being seeded higher, Zverev seemingly came into the match as the underdog but ultimately produced a cool performance to win 6-4 6-4 4-6 7-6 (9-7) and awaits either Novak Djokovic or Rafael Nadal.

Alcaraz's sloppiness helped contribute to a fairly dominant first couple of sets for Zverev, but the gifted Spaniard fought back impressively to take the third and the tide appeared to be turning in the teenager's favour.

Zverev was no longer controlling rallies and increasingly found Alcaraz's blend of power and finesse tricky to cope with, but showed admirable grit to cling on and silence his opponent's vocal support.

The 25-year-old improved after a nervy start, capitalising on poor serving to claim the first break, with the near-flawless Zverev dropping just two more points on serve as he closed the first set in composed fashion.

The erratic Alcaraz was showing only flashes of his ability, while Zverev appeared unflappable as he saved a break point at 2-1 down in the second set before snatching a break of his own – the Spaniard regretting an attempt to serve and volley as he quickly found himself two sets down.

Going on the offensive was a necessity for Alcaraz in the third set and his spirit kept him alive when saving another break point with an immaculate drop shot – one of many – and an ace at 4-4.

He then finally broke Zverev for the first time, another brilliant drop shot doing the business, and he soon had the set.

By this point, Alcaraz appeared to be exerting greater control in the rallies playing up to the crowd more, but Zverev ended their fourth-set deadlock with a break that allowed him to serve for the match – not that he could capitalise.

Alcaraz hit back instantly and emphatically with a tie-break beckoning. His energy seemed to suggest the match was heading only one way, but Zverev held off a set point and finally put the match to bed with a reflex shot at the net.  

Jessica Pegula promised to come out fighting with her "A-game" as she aims for a "great story" by defeating the in-form Iga Swiatek at the French Open.

World number one Swiatek survived a first-set scare against Zheng Qinwen in the fourth round at Roland Garros to secure a 6-7 (5-7) 6-0 6-2 win on Monday.

That extended Swiatek's winning run to 32 matches, which means only Serena Williams (34) and Venus Williams (35) have recorded longer streaks on the WTA Tour this century.

Swiatek would match the longest winning run of the 2000s – set by Venus Williams in 2000 (35) – should she go on to lift the Coupe Suzanne Lenglen for a second time on Saturday, but first has to find a way past Pegula on Wednesday.

Pegula has only dropped two sets in Paris after reaching the quarter-finals with a 4-6 6-2 6-3 triumph over Romania’s Irina-Camelia Begu.

The world number 11 was the 16th scalp of Swiatek's incredible winning run when she lost to the Pole in Miami, and the American knows she must be at her best to contend with the top seed - who turned 21 on Tuesday.

"I know I'm going to have to play really, really well," Pegula said.

"I'm going to have to play aggressive against her, I'm going to have to go for my shots, because she is better when the point extends.

"I'm going to try and shorten the points as much as I can but at the same time try and be patient and not go for too much and miss my shots.

"But it's definitely going to be really tough. Hopefully I can bring my A-game because I need it."

Pegula and Swiatek share a 1-1 head-to-head record and is determined to be the one to end her dominance. 

"I practised with her here as well before the tournament started and she's a super nice girl," Pegula revealed.

"We practised a few times. So I definitely know [her game] but obviously in the moment, it's hard to pinpoint exactly what you should do. 

"She's just been so solid in every aspect. I think it's one of those things where at least I've played her so I think I do have that familiar sense, going against her, but yeah maybe a little different on clay.

"I think it goes both ways. I think sometimes it's like, 'Oh, I wish I didn't play her in the quarter-finals. I wish I played one of the other people, and didn't meet her so early, but then at the same time, it's a great chance to have a great win and a great story."

Coco Gauff marched into her first grand slam semi-final with a straight-sets defeat of fellow American Sloane Stephens at the French Open.

Teenager Gauff will face the unseeded Martina Trevisan for a place in the final after beating her compatriot 7-5 6-2 at Roland Garros on Tuesday.

The composed 18-year-old has not dropped a set in Paris and produced another assured display on Court Phillipe-Chatrier to break new ground.

Eighth seed Gauff was rewarded for an aggressive display, breaking six times as Stephens paid the price for being too passive in a contest that was over in 90 minutes.

Gauff started with huge confidence, racing into a 3-0 lead courtesy of some heavy hitting while creating great angles.

Stephens clicked into gear with a more aggressive approach, winning three games in a row from 5-2 down as Gauff was unable to serve out the set.

The teenager halted with momentum with a hold and wrapped up the set with a backhand winner after the 2017 US Open champion made a mess of a volley at the net.

Stephens came out firing to break in the first game of the second set, but Gauff hit straight back to get back on serve and led 3-1 after ending another point she dictated with a cross-court backhand winner.

The 64th-ranked Stephens was gifted a chance to get back on serve when Gauff presented her with a simple volley at the net, but she inexplicably drilled it long and the youngster held for a 4-1 lead after saving three break points.

Gauff had won five games in a row and was on the brink of victory when her opponent crashed a forehand into the net, and although she failed to serve out the match in a nervy game, she broke for a fourth time in the second set to seal it.

 

Data slam: Gauff living the teenage dream

Gauff became only the fifth female player to reach the last four at Roland Garros this century before turning 19. On the evidence of this display, she has a great chance of playing in a maiden major final on Saturday.

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS
Gauff– 18/23
Stephens – 16/31

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS
Gauff – 3/6
Stephens– 0/1

BREAK POINTS WON
Gauff – 6/10
Stephens – 3/9

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