Coco Gauff extends winning run to 16 by beating Maria Sakkari in Beijing

Coco Gauff will take on Iga Swiatek in the semi-finals of the China Open after continuing her winning streak in Beijing.

The US Open champion made it 16 victories in a row with a straightforward 6-2 6-4 success against Greek Maria Sakkari, who saw her late charge to qualify for the WTA Finals end.

Second seed Swiatek had a tougher time against Caroline Garcia but fought back from a set down to defeat the Frenchwoman 6-7 (8) 7-6 (5) 6-1.

Swiatek won her first seven matches against Gauff without dropping a set but the American turned the tables in the semi-finals of the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati in August prior to lifting her maiden grand slam title.

“Everybody who plays her, no matter the game style, you have to be prepared to run and just be ready for everything,” said Gauff.

“She’s in the position she is for a reason, she’s one of the best players in the world for a reason, and I’m just going to go out there and hopefully do a similar result to Cincinnati. If not, I’m really proud  of the way that I’ve been doing to get to the semi-finals so far.”

Swiatek was twice within two points of defeat against Garcia, and she said: “For sure it was really intense. We played really fast. There was no time sometimes to think or analyse. I’m happy I used my intuition a lot.

“In both of these first sets, every ball counted. I’m happy that in the third I could just go for it.”

Saturday’s second semi-final will see Elena Rybakina take on Liudmila Samsonova after Kazakhstan’s Rybakina knocked out world number one Aryna Sabalenka 7-5 6-2 to advance.

Unseeded Samsonova reached her fourth semi-final of 2023 and second at WTA 1000 level with a 6-3 6-2 victory over Latvian opponent Jeļena Ostapenko.

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