September 27, 2018 TASHKENT, Uzbekistan - Unseeded players Kateryna Kozolova of Ukraine , Mona Barthel of Germany , Margarita Gasparayan of Russia and her country mate and qualifier Anastasia Potapova entered the singles semifinals of the 20th Tashkent Open WTA Championships being played at the Olympic Tennis Complex here .
In contrasting quarterfinal matches unseeded Mona Barthel of Germany created the biggest upset of the day knocking out second seeded Vera Lapko of Belarus 6-3,7-5 in 1 hour 34 minutes , Unseeded Margarita Gasparayan of Russia took 1 hour 56 minutes and come back from loss of first set to stop qualifier Fanny Stollar of Hungary 3-6,6-2,6-1
Unseeded Kateryna Kozlova of Ukraine made it to her second semifinal here upsetting sixth seeded Anna Karolina Schmiedlova of Slovakia 6-3,6-2 in 1 hours 17 minutes . Nextgen Star and qualifier Anastasia Potapova took 1 hour 44 minutes to register a 7-5,2-6,6-1 upset win over eight seeded Slovenian Dalila Jakupovic
In the Biggest upset of the day unseeded Mona Barthel of Germany shocked second seeded , 64 ranked Vera Lapko 6-3,7-5 in 1 hour 34 minute tussle , Barthel used all her experience against the 19 year old Lapko , Barthel secured a break in the 8th game in the first set and the 11th game of the second set to set up a win and make the semifinals on debut here.
Speaking to the Tashkent media Team after reaching the semifinals here , the tall German who has four WTA titles to her credit said , " since the Prague event in 2017 , I have struggled and I went out of the top 100 this year , I have had a lots of Ups and Down , but the last few weeks I have played some good matches and feeling better now"
On her upset win today , Barthel who also made the finals of the $125K Challenger at Chicago few weeks ago said " It was a tough match , my whole plan was to focus on game and put pressure on her , she had some opportunities to break me in the second set , but I served well and played aggressively on break points and that was the key to my win today.
On her journey to the last four here Barthel said " I have played Two tough, three set matches in two days , it's not easy to play three setter matches , but I tried to give best and be focused . I like the atmosphere and the conditions here . I like the tournament , it's my first time here , the city is beautiful and people are great , and look to play semifinals and spend some more days here ", said the former world No 23 player.
In the Semifinals Barthel will take on 2015 Baku champion Margarita Gasparyan who plays her first semifinal of her comeback . The former World No.41who has spent 16 months on the sidelines between Wimbledon 2016 and Moscow 2017 said " I wanted to win , I played all the important points well , I needed this win ".
Coming back from loss of the first set the unseeded Russian Gasparayan took 1 hour 56 minutes to stop qualifier Fanny Stollar of Hungary 3-6,6-2,6-1 , Gasparayan Started shakily and was broken in the 8th game of the first set , but bounced back strongly to stop the run of Hungarian qualifier Stollar , Breaking her twice in the 4th and the 8th games of the second set , and 4th and 6th games of the third set .
In the top half unseeded Kateryna Kozlova of Ukraine continued with her giant killing spree accounting for sixth seeded Anna Karolina Schmiedlova of Slovakia 6-3,6-2 in 1 hours 17 minutes .
In the first set Kozlova broke the 19 year old Schmiedlova in the 7th and the 9th game in the first set and the 2nd,6th and the 8th game in the second set to move into the semifnals here after a two year gap .
"I mixed up the game very well , I knew she likes to play in a rhythm but I mixed up my game and was successful " I made very few errors and ad am happy to reach my first semifinals here I hope I can continue with my great run here , said Kozlova
Kozlova's next opponent in the semifinals will be Nextgen Star and qualifier Anastasia Potapova who took 1 hour 44 minutes to register a 7-5,2-6,6-1 upset win over eight seeded Slovenian Dalila Jakupovic .
After trading break twice , Potapova broke the experienced Jakupovic in the 12th game of the first set-to win it 7-5. In the second set the eighth seeded Slovenian played some great forehand returns to unnerve the 18 year old Russian and broke her in the 3rd and 7th games to take the set 6-2 and level scores at 1set all.
In the deciding set Potapova went for her strokes hitting the ball early on both flanks giving no opportunity to Jakupovic , Potapova who made it to her second semis on the tour broke Jakupovic in the 4th and the 6th game and won the third set 6-1.
"I'm feeling a little tired but happy to make the semifinals , I've played two more matches than my opponent coming to the semis , its good because it gave me more experience and bad because it's made me tired , said the Young Russian after the match
We were playing for the first time and we didn't know what to expect from each other , I played two good games in the first set , in the second my opponent started reading me and played well , before the start of the third set I told myself " You have to give all you have now and I'm happy to come through". Asked about her next match " I've played her before and won too , but tomorrow is another day, I'm very happy to make the last four , Potapova Said in a post match interview.
Kateryna Kozlova (UKR) bt S6.Anna Karolina Schmiedlova - 6/3 6/2
Anastasia Potapova (RUS) bt S8.Dalila Jakupovic (SLO) - 7/5 2/6 6/1
Margarita Gasparyan (RUS) bt [Q] Fanny Stollar - 3/6 6/2 6/1
Mona Barthel (GER) bt S2.Vera Lapko (BLR) - 6/3 7/5
Olga Danilovic(SLO)/Tamara Zidansek(SLO) bt Dalila Jakupovic(SRB)/Vera Lapko(BLR) – 7/506/4
S2.Nao Hibinho(JPN)/Oksana Kalashnikova (GEO) bt Kateryna Kozlova (UKR)/Vera Zvonareva (RUS) – 6/4 6/3
Following is the line Up for the Singles SemifinalsKateryna Kozlova v/s Anastasia Potapova , Margarita Gasparayan v/s Mona Barthel
Date of Birth: 25 FEB 1994
Birthplace: Montréal, Canada
Height: 5’10" (1.78 m)
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