Swiatek tops Pegula. He faces Sabalenka in the semi-finals of the US Open

New York (AFP) – Iga Swiatek lost four consecutive points in the US Open quarter-finals to Jessica Pegula by missing shots, some violently. So, with Pegula breaking 3-2 and serving at 30 love, Swiatek moved to the sideline mid-match to swap her white racket for another.

The roof of Arthur Ashe Stadium was open, the 70-degree air was as cold and dry as it was during a hot and humid cycle, and Swiatek thought maybe she should try a tighter stringer pull to see if that would help control the ball a little more.

Whether it actually did the trick, or simply put Swiatek’s mind at ease, this move definitely swung the direction of the match. #1 seeded Swiatek had 14 of the next 15 points, and while closing things off wasn’t easy, she reached her first semifinal at Flushing Meadows with a 6-3, 7-6 (4) victory over Pegula in. Wednesday night.

“I don’t know if that’s really the key or something,” Swiatek said after a match packed with 13 breaks from serve, 10 in the second set alone. “Sure, I don’t think about strings (anymore), and I just focused on the right things after the change.”

Upon resuming play, Swiatek appeared in a short comeback that floated toward Pegula, who lunged out a swinging backhand that landed. This was followed by three consecutive fouls by player No. 8 Pegola, the highest-ranked American player.