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Bianca Andreescu beats Venus Williams at ASB Classic

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AUCKLAND, New Zealand — Canadian teenager Bianca Andreescu knocked off another former No. 1 on Friday, beating seven-time Grand Slam champion Venus Williams 6-7 (1) 6-1, 6-3 to reach the semifinals at the ASB Classic.

The 18-year-old Andreescu, who is ranked 152nd in the world and had to go through qualifying to make the tournament, defeated top-seeded Caroline Wozniacki in the second round.

“I believe that anything is possible and tonight I think I did the impossible,” Andreescu said. “My goal was only to qualify and maybe get a couple of rounds in but now I beat a couple of top players so who knows? I believed in myself to the end. I fought and I really enjoyed myself.”

After being broken in the opening game of the second set, Andreescu reeled off 11 straight games to take control of the match.

Also, defending champion Julia Goerges saved a match point in the third set before beating Eugenie Bouchard 3-6, 6-3, 7-6 (6).

Playing with a swirling wind that made serving difficult for both players, Goerges hit seven aces and 47 winners.

“I think this was one of the toughest matches I’ve ever played and probably the toughest here in Auckland,” Goerges said. “The winds today were swirling around, coming suddenly and then gone.

“Chairs were flying around, hats, everything. But you can’t do anything about it, you just have to accept it and stay positive about it.”

Bouchard held a match point on serve at 6-5 in the final set but couldn’t convert.

Viktoria Kuzmova reached the semifinals by beating American teen Amanda Anisimova 6-3, 2-6, 6-4. At 17, Anisimova is the youngest player in the top 100.

Fognini stuns Nadal 6-4, 6-2 to reach Monte Carlo final

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MONACO (AP) Fabio Fognini ended Rafael Nadal’s long winning streak at the Monte Carlo Masters, stunning the defending champion 6-4, 6-2 Saturday to reach the final for the first time and hand Nadal his first defeat here since 2015.

The 13th-seeded Italian had beaten Nadal twice before on clay, and also once at the U.S. Open in five sets, but this was arguably the most impressive.

Not since the 2005 final, a five-setter which Nadal won in four sets, had the 11-time champion Nadal been beaten 6-0 in a set here. And Fognini came so close to doing just that.

He served for the match at 5-0 and 40-0, but Nadal saved three match points – and some pride – by breaking back and then holding.

Serving again for the match at 5-2, Fognini hit a superb forehand down the line to clinch victory on his fourth match point.

Nadal’s last defeat here was also in the semifinals, against Novak Djokovic in 2015. He had not lost a set at the clay-court tournament since conceding one in the second round against Britain’s Kyle Edmund in 2017.

Fognini next plays unseeded Serb Dusan Lajovic in their first-ever meeting, and one few would have predicted happening here.

The 48th-ranked Lajovic earlier staged a remarkable comeback from 5-1 down to beat 10th-seeded Daniil Medvedev 7-5, 6-1.

Lajovic won 10 straight games to open up a 4-0 lead in the second set before Medvedev finally held serve. But after saving one match point, the Russian player tamely hit a return long on his opponent’s next opportunity.

It could have been an all-Serb semifinal but Medvedev knocked out the top-ranked Djokovic in Friday’s quarterfinals.

Saturday’s match started in difficult conditions, with a heavy wind coming in from the Mediterranean.

Serving for the first set at 5-1, Medvedev dropped his serve and remonstrated with himself.

Lajovic clinched the first set on serve, with Medvedev completely mistiming the ball and sending it skyward.

The 28-year-old Lajovic was ill before the tournament and said he needed antibiotics to recover.

He struggled to describe his surprise run.

“Incredible … Unreal,” he said, before settling on “It’s been a great week.”

Lajovic stages comeback to reach Monte Carlo final

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MONACO (AP) Unseeded Serb Dusan Lajovic staged a remarkable comeback from 5-1 down to beat 10th-seeded Daniil Medvedev 7-5, 6-1 in the Monte Carlo Masters semifinals on Saturday.

Lajovic won 10 straight games to open up a 4-0 lead in the second set before Medvedev finally held serve. But after saving one match point, the Russian player tamely hit a return long on his opponent’s next opportunity.

The 48th-ranked Lajovic now plays in his first career final against 11-time champion Rafael Nadal or 13th-seeded Fabio Fognini.

It could have been an all-Serb semi but Medvedev knocked out top-ranked Novak Djokovic in Friday’s quarterfinals.

Saturday’s match started in difficult conditions, with a heavy wind coming in from the Mediterranean blowing clay around the court.

Serving for the set at 5-1, Medvedev dropped his serve and remonstrated with himself.

He had good cause.

The first-set turnaround was complete when Lajovic clinched it on serve, with Medvedev completely mistiming the ball and sending it skyward.