Sakkari powers past Rybakina and into Indian Wells semis
Greece’s Maria Sakkari overcame a first set deficit to beat Elena Rybakina 7-5 6-4 and book her place in the Indian Wells final four on Thursday.
The Greek dynamo clawed her way out of a 4-1 first set hole with help from 20 unforced errors by her Kazakh opponent and seized the momentum for good in the second set when she erased four break points to take a 2-0 lead.
The sixth-seeded Sakkari sealed the win when Rybakina shanked a forehand on match point to reach her 20th career semi-final and third straight this year under sunny skies in the Southern California desert.
Next up for Sakkari is a showdown with either defending champion Paula Badosa of Spain or Russia’s Veronika Kudermetova, who play their quarter-final later on Thursday.