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Sabalenka stops Azarenka to reach Montreal semis

Tennis: National Bank Open

Aug 13, 2021; Montreal, Quebec, Canada; Aryna Sabalenka from Belarus hits a shot against Victoria Azarenka from Belarus (not pictured) during the quarterfinals at Stade IGA. Mandatory Credit: Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports

Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports

MONTREAL -- Top-seeded Aryna Sabalenka beat Victoria Azarenka, 6-2, 6-4 in a quarterfinal between players from Belarus at the National Bank Open.

Sabalenka, ranked No. 3, trailed 4-2 in the second set before winning four games in a row. She had seven aces in the 79-minute match.

“I’m really happy with this, it was a tough match,” Sabalenka said. "(Azarenka) played really well. The second set was a little tricky. I’m really happy that I came back in the end of the set and won it actually.”

Azarenka was seeded eighth.

“I feel I just didn’t take my opportunities,” Azarenka said. “It’s as simple as that.”

Sabalenka will face fourth-seeded Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic in the semifinals. Pliskova beat Spain’s Sara Sorribes Tormo 6-4, 6-0.

Italy’s Camila Giorgi beat 17-year-old American Coco Gauff 6-4, 7-6 (2) in the night session. Giorgi will face the winner of the late match between Tunisia’s Ons Jabeur and American Jessica Pegula.