Victoria Azarenka, Angelique Kerber move into Miami semis

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Tennis professional Victoria Azarenka. Photo by John Angelillo/UPI
Tennis professional Victoria Azarenka. Photo by John Angelillo/UPI | License Photo

Victoria Azarenka reached the women's semifinals in the Miami Open with a 6-4, 6-2 victory over Johanna Konta in a quarterfinal match on Wednesday in Key Biscayne, Fla.

Azarenka advances to face second-seeded Angelique Kerber, who topped No. 22 Madison Keys 6-3, 6-2. Keys was the last American left in the men's or women's field.


The 13th-seeded Azarenka, trying to join Steffi Graf and Kim Clijsters as the only women to win the Indian Wells and Key Biscayne tournaments in the same year, never lost serve against the 24th-seeded Konta.

Azarenka has a 20-1 match record this year. She beat Serena Williams in the Indian Wells final less than two weeks ago but won't have to face her in Miami after Williams lost to No. 15 Svetlana Kuznetsova, who faces No. 19 Timea Bacsinszky in the other Miami semifinal on Thursday.

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Azarenka, a former No. 1-ranked player, won the championship in Miami in 2009 and 2013.

Kerber, 28, captured the first grand slam title of her career when she won the Australian Open in January, beating top-seeded Serena Williams in the final. She fell in her opening match in each of her next two tournaments before bouncing back in Miami.


In men's singles action, Belgium's David Goffin became the first player to advance to the semifinals, rallying past France's Gilles Simon 3-6, 6-2, 6-1.

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Goffin, the 15th seed, lost his serve just once and won 69 percent of his first-service points. He closed out Simon, the 18th seed, by firing six aces in the third set.

Next up for Goffin is a match against top-seeded Novak Djokovic of Serbia or seventh-seeded Tomas Berdych of the Czech Republic. Djokovic played against Berdych on Wednesday night.

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