Sofia Kenin's surprising run of the Australian Open reaches the semi-finals


MELBOURNE, Australia – Sofia Kenin's breakthrough in the Grand Slam tournament continued into the semi-finals of the Australian Open.

The 21-year-old Kenin defeated Ons Jabeur in the first game on Tuesday in the Rod Laver Arena with 6: 4 and 6: 4 in 78th place. Both played for the first time in the quarterfinals with a major.

Jabeur, a 25-year-old Tunisian, was the first Arab woman to make it up to the last eight in a major.

For Kenin, who was born in Moscow but moved to the United States as a baby and grew up in Florida, the level of difficulty increased dramatically.

In the semi-finals, she will either play against Ash Barty, the French Open champion who wants to prevent an Australian drought at the national championship, or against two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova, who reached the final here last year.

Kenin was going to watch the match that followed her at the Rod Laver Arena and enjoy it. She had no preference for who she played next.

Sofia Kenin
Sofia KeninGetty Images

"I'm in the semi-finals," she said. "" Everyone I play plays really well. "

Kenin also plays her best tennis. Her best run so far at Melbourne Park ended in round two when she lost to Simona Halep last year. His best run so far at a Grand Slam tournament was the fourth round at the French Open last year.

She ended the year in 14th place and was able to keep up with 1st place in a category with Barty: last year they were tied with 38 victories for most hard court victories on the women's tour.

Kenin's run here included a comeback win in the third round against 15-year-old Coco Gauff when she made only nine casual mistakes in the second and third sets.

In the second set against Jabeur, she saved three breakpoints in a long sixth game and then made a break serve in the seventh game to achieve victory.

"It was a tough moment," said Kenin. "I didn't know it was 10 minutes [but] The game was quite long. After that I got my swing. "

In the men's later quarter-finals, 20-time Major Roger Federer played against 100-year-old Tennys Sandgren, and seven-time Australian Open winner Novak Djokovic played a night game against Canadian Milos Raonic.