Aryna Sabalenka demonstrated why she is considered a top contender for this year’s US Open by delivering a commanding performance against Zheng Qinwen on Wednesday, securing a spot in the semifinals.
The second-ranked player in the world easily defeated the 20-year-old from China, with a final score of 6-1 6-4 in the Arthur Ashe Stadium.
Sabalenka’s dominant serve and powerful shots easily propelled her past Zheng and into the semifinals of the US Open.
Following a few notable departures, Sabalenka remains the top seed in the competition and appears to be the frontrunner.
“I am very pleased with my performance in today’s tennis match,” Sabalenka stated during her post-match interview. “I am extremely happy with how I played and I am looking forward to another chance to improve in the semifinals.”
She will face either Wimbledon champion Markéta Vondroušová or American Madison Keys for a place in the final.
World No .1
Iga Świątek’s elimination from the US Open guarantees that Sabalenka will claim the top spot in the world rankings for the first time on Monday.
She has climbed to the highest position in the world rankings following an incredible year where she has claimed three championships, including her inaugural grand slam victory at the Australian Open.
She maintained her dominant performance against Zheng in the quarterfinals, easily defeating her opponent in the first set, which only lasted 27 minutes.
During the break between sets, Zheng was able to gather herself and slowly gain momentum in the match. Despite her young age, she held her own against Sabalenka as they took turns winning service games at the beginning of the second set.
Sabalenka was able to break Zheng’s resilience and take the lead with a crucial break of serve in the seventh game of the set.
Despite her efforts, Zheng was unable to retaliate and the Belarusian effortlessly served out the match.
Sabalenka will be competing in her third straight US Open semifinal with the goal of winning her second grand slam title in 2023.
Sabalenka – who is into her fifth consecutive grand slam semifinal – has now won the first seven major quarterfinals of her career, second on the all-time list behind Chris Evert who, amazingly, won her first 48.