Wozniacki beats Errani, advances to first Grand Slam final in 3 years

  • Associated Press
  • Tuesday, September 2, 2014 8:27pm
  • SportsSports

NEW YORK — Caroline Wozniacki moved into her first Grand Slam semifinal in three years by overwhelming 13th-seeded Sara Errani of Italy 6-0, 6-1 Tuesday night in a wind-whipped match.

With the players’ towels and spectators’ napkins and all sorts of things being tossed around by the stirred-up air, the 10th-seeded Wozniacki dealt with the conditions far better than Errani. Although not right away.

The match began competitively enough, with a pair of points that lasted more than 20 strokes apiece in the first game. Errani — who defeated Venus Williams in the third round — earned four break points before 2009 U.S. Open runner-up Wozniacki eventually held despite a double-fault in which one serve didn’t come close to reaching the net.

Winning that opening game “was very important,” Wozniacki said. “You always go out there and (can be) a little bit nervous. … The second serve landed by my feet, and I kind of knew it was going to be tricky with the wind.”

She turned out to be just fine, ending up with a 26-12 edge in winners. Wozniacki also won 26 of 34 points served by Errani, the runner-up at the 2012 French Open and a semifinalist in New York that year.

Wozniacki had not been to the semis at any major tournament since losing at that stage at Flushing Meadows in 2011.

“It means so much to me,” Denmark’s Wozniacki said in an on-court interview. “It’s been a pretty up-and-down year for me, and to be here in the semifinals of the U.S. Open once again is just an incredible feeling. Definitely, hard work pays off.”

Wozniacki, a former No. 1 who eliminated five-time major champion Maria Sharapova in three sets in the fourth round, will face unseeded Peng Shuai of China in the semifinals.

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