Makarova beats Azarenka to reach US Open semis - NBC Sports

Makarova beats Azarenka to reach US Open semis
Ekaterina Makarova, of Russia, reacts after defeating Victoria Azarenka, of Belarus, in two sets during the quarterfinals of the 2014 U.S. Open tennis tournament, Wednesday, Sept. 3, 2014, in New York. (AP Photo/Mike Groll)
September 3, 2014, 2:30 pm

NEW YORK (AP) Ekaterina Makarova reached her first Grand Slam semifinal, beating Victoria Azarenka in straight sets at the U.S. Open.

The 26-year-old Russian won 6-4, 6-2 on Wednesday after losing her previous four major quarterfinals. The players were 16th and 17th in the seedings but came in with very different resumes.

Azarenka is a two-time Australian Open champ who lost to Serena Williams in the last two U.S. Open finals. But her ranking slipped after a season interrupted by injuries.

She often looked shaky against qualifier Aleksandra Krunic but eked out a three-set victory. But on Wednesday, Makarova took full advantage of her mistakes.

Unusually subdued for most of the match, Azarenka smashed her racket after an unforced error gave Makarova a break and a 4-2 lead in the second set.

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