WTA roundup: Jessica Pegula reaches Charleston semis

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Top-seeded Jessica Pegula and two past Charleston Open champions advanced to the semifinals of the South Carolina event with wins on Friday.

Pegula, who spent part of her childhood in South Carolina, downed 12th-seeded Paula Badosa of Spain 6-3, 7-6 (6). Her semifinal opponent will be fourth-seeded Belinda Bencic of Switzerland, the tournament’s reigning champion. Bencic defeated seventh-seeded Ekaterina Alexandrova of Russia 6-3, 6-3.

Third-seeded Daria Kasatkina of Russia, the Charleston champion in 2017, came from behind to oust ninth-seeded Madison Keys of the United States 6-7 (5), 6-4, 6-2. Kasatkina next will oppose second-seeded Ons Jabeur of Tunisia, who fell to Bencic in last year’s Charleston final.

Jabeur advanced on Friday when Russia’s Anna Kalinskaya retired because of an illness while trailing 6-0, 4-1.

Pegula dominated with her serve against Badosa, winning 80 percent of her first-serve points and saving the lone break point she faced.

Copa Colsanitas

Great Britain’s Francesca Jones, ranked 817th in the world, became the lowest-ranked player to reach a WTA semifinal in four years by eliminating sixth-seeded Laura Pigossi of Brazil 6-4, 6-2 in Bogota, Colombia.

Jones is back in action this year after missing a year due to injury. She is competing in her first tour-level main draw since playing at Wimbledon in 2021.

The last time a player ranked below Jones made a tour semifinal was when Patricia Maria Tig of Romania (unranked at the time) got to a final in 2019 at Bucharest, Romania.

Pigossi was a finalist at Bogota last year, and next Jones will oppose the reigning Bogota champion, Tatjana Maria of Germany. Maria, who is seeded second, defeated Italy’s Nuria Brancaccio 6-3, 6-2 in the quarterfinals.

Fourth-seeded Kamilla Rakhimova of Russia downed seventh-seeded Sara Sorribes Tormo of Spain 6-4, 7-5, setting up a semifinal match against Peyton Stearns. The 21-year-old U.S. player defeated Slovenia’s Tamara Zidansek 6-3, 2-6, 6-2.

–Field Level Media

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