Madrid: Veronika Kudermetova took out No.3 seed Jessica Pegula in a rollercoaster three-setter in the Madrid Open to reach the biggest semifinal of her career with a 6-4, 0-6, 6-4 win over the American in the quarterfinal on Wednesday.
Kudermetova had previously reached three quarterfinals at WTA 1000 level or above, all in 2022 at Indian Wells, Roland Garros and Guadalajara, and Wednesday’s result moved her into the last four at this level for the first time.
In a first-time encounter with 2022 finalist Pegula, Kudermetova also notched her seventh career Top-5 win, and first since defeating Tunisian Ons Jabeur in the San Jose quarterfinals last August. She had entered Madrid on a four-match losing streak.
Both the first and third sets featured five breaks of serve, with the quality of both players’ returns exceeding that of their serves in the initial stages.
Kudermetova twice went up a break first, but was pegged back both times — but once she had captured the Pegula serve for a third time, managed to use that momentum to get over the finishing line 2 hours and 5 minutes.
The 12th seed will face world number one Iga Swiatek or Croatia’s Petra Martic in Thursday’s semifinal.
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