Maria Sharapova, Petra Kvitova advance
Gerstner: Getting The Job Done
Maria Sharapova wasn't at peak form in Wednesday's quarterfinals. Neither was Petra Kvitova. But both women had enough savvy to stave off their foes to reach the semis, espnW's Joanne C. Gerstner writes. Story
Kvitova earlier reached the semifinals at Melbourne Park for the first time with a 6-4, 6-4 win over unseeded Italian Sara Errani.
Kvitova beat Sharapova in last year's Wimbledon final to claim her first Grand Slam title.
"Obviously it was a tough one at Wimbledon," Sharapova said. "She's full of confidence and playing the best tennis right now. I look forward to it."
The fourth-seeded Sharapova must repeat her 2008 Australian title win. Kvitova only has to match or better the run of Victoria Azarenka, the only other player still in the running this week for the No. 1 spot.
Sharapova has dropped one set and lost 21 games en route to her first Australian Open semifinal since she won the 2008 final -- the last of her three major titles.
Need the scores from any match played in today's Aussie Open? Courtcast
"It's been a long road back to this stage," said Sharapova, who spent 10 months off court with a shoulder injury that required surgery later in 2008.
Kvitova was far from her best against an opponent making her debut in a Grand Slam quarterfinal, and with a 0-24 record against top-10 players. The second-seeded Czech made 44 errors and had to come back from a break down in the second set.
"I was a little nervous because I knew that everybody expect it will be easy match," Kvitova said. "Probably I had in my head that it's a good draw."
The other women's semifinal will feature defending champion Clijsters against third-seeded Azarenka. Clijsters advanced with a 6-3, 7-6 (4) win over Wozniacki, who remains without a major title. Azarenka rallied for a 6-7 (0), 6-0, 6-2 win over eighth-seeded Agnieszka Radwanska.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.
MORE TENNIS HEADLINES
- U.S. Open singles champs to get record $3M
- Isner back in Hall quarters for 4th year in row
- Djokovic back at No. 1 after Wimbledon win
- Olivo stuns Robredo to reach Bastad quarters
MOST SENT STORIES ON ESPN.COM
Australian Open 2012
Svetlana Kuznetsova and Vera Zvonareva
Leander Paes and Radek Stepanek
Bethanie Mattek Sands and Horia Tecau
Slam Central »
Follow us on Twitter »
Watch on ESPN