PARIS (Reuters) – Polish teenager Iga Swiatek recovered from a nervy start to outclass Italian qualifier Martina Trevisan 6-3 6-1 and move into the French Open semi-finals on Tuesday.
The 19-year-old, who thrashed Romania’s top seed Simona Halep on Sunday to reach her first Grand Slam quarter-final, looked tight as she trailed 3-1 after a long wait to get on court but then took charge with some aggressive hitting.
She is the first Polish woman to reach the French Open semi-finals since Jadwiga Jedrzejowska was runner-up in 1939.
Former Wimbledon junior champion Swiatek won eight games in a row to move within three games of victory before tricky left-hander Trevisan stopped the rot with a break of serve.
However, a crushing forehand winner by Swiatek in the following game resumed the onslaught and she romped to her fifth straight-sets victory in a row on the Paris clay.
“It was pretty hard at the beginning because it was hard to get used to the conditions, and also I played all my other matches at 11am so it was like playing in the middle of the night,” she said on Court Philippe Chatrier.
“But I’m pretty happy with my performance.”
Swiatek has a free-flowing game but initially it was 159th-ranked Trevisan, who knocked out American sensation Coco Gauff, 20th seed Maria Sakkari and fifth seed Kiki Bertens on her run to the last eight, who settled quickest.
But once Swiatek loosened up her opponent was always on the back foot, although the Italian did have a couple of break points when the teenager served for the opener at 5-3.
Swiatek saved those and brought up a third set point with a superb topspin lob and converted it when Trevisan made an error.
The pattern continued into the second set and although Trevisan hung in gamely she was no match for one of the game’s most exciting talents.
Had Trevisan won she would have set up an unlikely semi-final against Argentina’s Nadia Podoroska which would have guaranteed a qualifier reaching a Grand Slam final for the first time in the professional era.
It was not to be though as Swiatek ruthlessly brought her dream run to an abrupt halt in just over an hour.
“I’m really happy anyway,” Trevisan said. “Today was a really tough match. She’s a rising player, so she has a lot of positive energy. Today I close a very important chapter of my life. Tomorrow other chapters will begin. I’m just happy.”
Swiatek is also through to the doubles quarter-finals with American partner Nicole Melichar.
(Reporting by Martyn Herman; editing by Ken Ferris)