Venus Faces Konta in Miami Open semi-final

Mar 29, 2017; Miami, FL, USA; Venus Williams of the United States hits a backhand against Angelique Kerber of Germany (not pictured) on day nine of the 2017 Miami Open at Crandon Park Tennis Center. Williams won 7-5, 6-3. Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports
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American Venus Williams defeated top seed, Angelique Kerber, to advance to a Miami Open semi-final where she would play against Britain’s Johanna Konta.

The 11th seed Williams, who is seeking her fourth Miami title, survived a long first set before she completed a 7-5 6-3 victory over Germany’s Kerber on a calm evening in south Florida.

Meanwhile, Konta, the 10th seed, had earlier recovered from the brink of defeat to edge third seed, Simona Halep, in a three-set encounter that lasted two hours, 30 minutes.

Halep was only two points from victory in the second set, but could not put away her opponent, who pounced on the Romanian’s evident emotional fragility to prevail 3-6 7-6(7) 6-2.

Williams, 36, whose previous Miami titles came in 1998, 1999 and 2001, would next meet Konta in the semi-final, while Czech second, seek Karolina Pliskova faces Danish 12th seed, Carolina Wozniacki.

Williams, playing in front of a crowd that included her father Richard, took nearly an hour to take the first set from Kerber, but made quicker work of the second.

Halep, meanwhile, got down on herself after losing the second set tiebreak to Konta.

“It was a really tough match, very high level. I was so close to winning, I was two points away in the tiebreak, but she played very strong and deserved to win.” Halep told the WTA.

Despite the result, Halep took comfort from a solid tournament as she works her way back from a knee injury.

“I’m happy to be here after the break that I had. I’m just disappointed I lost a match I had in my hands. But my confidence is there, the game is there, I just need to play matches.”


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