A resolute Serena Williams recovered from a set and a break down to beat Tsvetana Pironkova on Wednesday and return to the US Open semi-finals.

Williams' pursuit of a long-awaited record-equalling 24th major title appeared in serious trouble as she struggled to effectively combat the resurgent Pironkova's combination of forehand slice and backhand power.

The Bulgarian - a 2010 Wimbledon semi-finalist - had not appeared on the WTA Tour since playing the All England Club three years ago but dumped out two seeds en route to this stage.

As the finish line quickly moved into sight on Arthur Ashe, though, the great Williams proved a step too far for Pironkova.

The 38-year-old, beaten in the previous two Flushing Meadows finals, dug in for an exhausting 4-6 6-3 6-2 success and set up her latest semi against either Elise Mertens or Victoria Azarenka.

 

Naomi Osaka said she is trying to be in the moment as the former world number one chases a third grand slam title at the US Open.

Osaka reached the US Open semi-finals on Tuesday thanks to a 6-3 6-4 win over Shelby Rogers at Flushing Meadows in New York.

The Japanese star is back in the US Open semis for the first time since capturing her maiden major on Arthur Ashe Stadium in 2018.

It triggered a whirlwind period of success for Osaka, who went on to win the 2019 Australian Open only a couple of months later in Melbourne.

Osaka, however, had not progressed beyond the fourth round of a slam since reigning supreme at Melbourne Park last year, so the fourth seed is making the most of her run in the United States.

"I don't think a person can ever be truly comfortable," Osaka said during her news conference when asked if she is feeling as comfortable as ever at the US Open. "But for me, I'm aware that I worked very hard to be in this position. I'm aware that the opponents that I play from now on are going to be very tough.

"For me, I think the last two grand slams, everything happened so fast, I wasn't really in the moment. I'm just really happy to be in the semis, and hopefully I can keep going."

Osaka, who will meet Jennifer Brady for a spot in the women's final after hitting 24 winners and just eight unforced errors against Rogers, said: "I feel like if I'm positive, no matter how much time it will take, I'll eventually get to where I want to be.

"For me, I felt like I did well at the end of the year, I won Tokyo and Beijing. I don't know.

"I feel like there's a certain mindset that I have to get to in order to get to the goals that I want to. But it does feel like a long time since I've been to this part of a major.

"At the same time all the work that I put in makes it seem like... I don't know. It's just a journey, I would say."

Osaka is the favourite to beat 28th seed Brady behind closed doors amid the coronavirus pandemic but she added: "I don't feel like the favourite weirdly enough. Because there's no fans, I don't feel anything. I just feel like I'm going into a match with a really talented player, which is all of my previous matches anyway.

"For me, I remember watching her. I watched her match against [Yulia] Putintseva earlier today. I know she's a big threat."

Pablo Carreno Busta reached his second grand slam semi-final with a five-set win over Denis Shapovalov at the US Open.

The Spanish 20th seed fought to a 3-6 7-6 (7-5) 7-6 (7-4) 0-6 6-3 victory over Shapovalov at Arthur Ashe Stadium.

The huge battled lasted four hours, eight minutes as Carreno Busta advanced to the semi-finals in New York for the second time and first since 2017.

Shapovalov produced a rollercoaster performance in his maiden major quarter-final, but the Canadian 12th seed fell short.

Carreno Busta, who advanced in the fourth round when Novak Djokovic was defaulted to open up the men's draw, will face Alexander Zverev in the semi-finals.

After trading early breaks, Shapovalov landed what proved to be the key blow of the opening set in the eighth game, breaking for 5-3 thanks to a rasping forehand winner down the line.

There were four breaks in the opening five games of the second set, with Carreno Busta unable to consolidate either of his.

Shapovalov held from 0-40 in the eighth game and saved a set point in the 10th, but there was no denying Carreno Busta as he played an excellent tie-break to level the match.

Carreno Busta broke for 3-2 in the third after Shapovalov sent a backhand wide, but just as he looked to be in control, he too dropped serve.

But while the tie-break again went Carreno Busta's way, Shapovalov dominated the fourth set, winning it to love on the back of 16 winners and just three unforced errors.

Carreno Busta required treatment on his lower back before the decider as the clash ticked towards a fifth hour.

After an even start to the fifth set, Carreno Busta was handed a break in the sixth game when Shapovalov double-faulted and he made no mistake closing it out.

 

STATISTICAL BREAKDOWN  

Carreno Busta [20] bt Shapovalov [12] 3-6 7-6 (7-5) 7-6 (7-4) 0-6 6-3

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS   

Carreno Busta – 33/42
Shapovalov – 76/76

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS   

Carreno Busta – 5/1
Shapovalov – 26/11

BREAK POINTS WON    

Carreno Busta – 5/21
Shapovalov – 8/16

FIRST SERVE PERCENTAGE   

Carreno Busta – 71
Shapovalov – 62

PERCENTAGE OF POINTS WON ON FIRST/SECOND SERVE   

Carreno Busta – 68/54
Shapovalov – 79/40

TOTAL POINTS   

Carreno Busta – 152
Shapovalov – 160

Alexander Zverev hit back at Martina Navratilova after criticism of his performance as he reached the US Open semi-finals.

The German fifth seed struggled to a 1-6 7-6 (7-5) 7-6 (7-1) 6-3 victory over Borna Coric on Arthur Ashe Stadium on Tuesday.

Navratilova, an 18-time grand slam singles champion, told Amazon Prime: "He will not be able to win against the top players playing the way he did today."

She said Zverev needed a display more similar to his final set and to "play better tennis overall".

Zverev was unhappy with the criticism, pointing to his record against Roger Federer (4-3 head-to-head) and Novak Djokovic, who he has beaten in two finals.

"Maybe she should look at my record against the big guys. Maybe she should look that I'm positive against Roger. Maybe she should look that I've beaten Novak on multiple occasions in big matches and finals," he told a news conference.

"And I'm in the semi-finals, and sometimes not playing your best and finding a way is more important than playing your best.

"But she's a grand slam champion, as well, multiple grand slam champion, she's respected, but her opinion right now does not matter to me."

With Djokovic out of the tournament, there will be a first-time major winner in the men's draw in New York.

Perhaps impacted by that, Zverev said he was below his best against Coric as he reached his second grand slam semi-final.

"I mean, look, obviously, yeah, I didn't play well. It's no secret about it. I was down 6-1, 4-2 after about 28 minutes. It's not a secret I didn't play my best," he said.

"But I found a way, found a way to win that second set, and I feel like that's the most important.

"I think the Novak news shocked us all, and obviously for us younger guys, we see that as a massive opportunity, but we have to put our head down and just do our job and focus on ourselves."

Zverev will face either Pablo Carreno Busta or Denis Shapovalov in the last four.

Naomi Osaka moved a step closer to a second US Open title after advancing to the semi-finals at the expense of Shelby Rogers.

Osaka – the 2018 champion and former world number one – was too good for Rogers 6-3 6-4 at Flushing Meadows on Tuesday.

A two-time grand slam champion, Osaka was 0-3 against Rogers heading into the quarter-final but the fourth seed finally ended her drought thanks to 24 winners and just eight unforced errors.

Osaka – who has claimed the US Open and Australian Open on the two occasions she has progressed beyond the fourth round of a slam – will face Jennifer Brady in the semi-finals.

It was an evening opening on Arthur Ashe Stadium behind closed doors, a showdown from the baseline under lights.

Osaka earned the first break-point chance in the sixth game, but Rogers caught the line with an aggressive cross-court winner to fend it off.

However, Osaka had a second chance to claim the break after Rogers sent a forehand long and another wayward shot gifted the Japanese star a 4-2 lead following a tense game.

Rogers, though, hit back immediately, smashing a ferocious winner on a second serve to reclaim the break, only for Osaka to break to love to restore her cushion with some powerful baseline hitting as she served out the set.

World number 93 Rogers – who was sidelined for 13 months in 2018 and 2019 due to a knee injury and was unranked as recently as last April – continued to play with aggression but she came unstuck in the third game, another stray forehand seeing Osaka move 2-1 ahead with the break.

Rogers tried to stay in the contest, but Osaka never looked back en route to the final four of a slam for the first time since winning the 2019 Australian Open.

 

STATISTICAL BREAKDOWN  

Osaka [4] bt Rogers 6-3 6-4

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS   

Osaka – 24/8
Rogers – 23/27

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS   

Osaka – 7/1
Rogers –  3/2

BREAK POINTS WON    

Osaka – 3/5
Rogers – 1/1

FIRST SERVE PERCENTAGE   

Osaka – 48
Rogers – 61

PERCENTAGE OF POINTS WON ON FIRST/SECOND SERVE   

Osaka – 83/69
Rogers – 66/33

TOTAL POINTS   

Osaka – 67
Rogers – 45

Alexander Zverev battled past Borna Coric in four sets to win an attritional quarter-final at the US Open.

Novak Djokovic's disqualification for hitting a ball at a linesperson has opened up the men's draw at Flushing Meadows and both players at times seemed to carry the weight of that pressure.

Fifth seed Zverev - who had 12 double faults - was particularly slow out of the blocks but as the match wore on was cooler in the big moments en route to triumphing 1-6 7-6 (7-5) 7-6 (7-1) 6-3 and booking a second career slam semi-final having reached the last four of the Australian Open in January.

Zverev, who trailed in the head-to-head 3-1 prior to Tuesday's contest including a US Open defeat to Coric in 2017, faces Pablo Carreno Busta – the beneficiary of Djokovic's indiscretion – or Denis Shapovalov for a spot in the final.

Zverev double faulted three times in a shoddy fourth game, which set the tone for an opening set that produced 12 unforced errors to gift Coric the advantage in just 24 minutes.

The German's composure slipped in game five of the second when a ball was wrongly called out against him and the point replayed, with Coric eventually going on to break after some mammoth rallies and a 20th unforced error of the match from Zverev.

Coric blinked back in game eight, though, and - having initially benefitted from another Zverev double fault - made a crucial unforced error to go 6-4 down in the tie-break and was unable to fight back.

In the third, Zverev had to fight for a crucial hold in game six, before neither man gave an inch in a set in which flashes of quality interspersed conservative tennis.

The breaker went entirely Zverev's way, though, and Coric squandered four break points in game six of the fourth before surrendering serve himself to go down 5-3 when his opponent thumped a forehand winner down the line.

In keeping with the theme of the contest, Zverev was nervy as he served out for the match but found a way to get the job done and became the first German male in a US Open semi-final in 25 years.

STATISTICAL BREAKDOWN

Zverev [5] bt Coric [27] 1-6 7-6 (7-5) 7-6 (7-1) 6-3

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS

Zverev – 52/46
Coric – 37/41

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS

Zverev – 18/12
Coric – 5/2

BREAK POINTS WON

Zverev – 3/8
Coric – 4/15

FIRST SERVE PERCENTAGE

Zverev – 71
Coric – 72

PERCENTAGE OF POINTS WON ON FIRST/SECOND SERVE

Zverev – 76/41
Coric – 70/57

TOTAL POINTS

Zverev – 136
Coric – 132

Jennifer Brady said she was "thrilled" to reach the first grand slam semi-final of her career as the American saw off Yulia Putintseva at the US Open.

After emerging from lockdown to take her first WTA title at the Top Seed Open last month, Brady continued her bright run by scoring a 6-3 6-2 win on Arthur Ashe Stadium.

Remarkably, the world number 41 has yet to drop a set in five singles matches this year at Flushing Meadows, with Putintseva joining a list of victims that includes former champion Angelique Kerber and dangerous French player Caroline Garcia.

Emerging from a top quarter of the draw that initially contained top seed Karolina Pliskova, Brady's power, coupled to more than a little finesse, has taken her through to a clash with Japan's Naomi Osaka or fellow US star Shelby Rogers next.

She sped into a 4-0 lead against Putintseva, whose guile was being outmatched by the strength and accuracy of Brady, unlike in their two previous meetings, both in 2018, when the Russian-born Kazakh player came out on top each time.

Recovering a break and getting back to 5-3 asked questions of Brady, but she had all the answers. Despite dropping serve when a break ahead early in the second set, Brady was unperturbed, her opponent being swiftly swatted out of the tournament.

A lob to set up three break points at 4-2 showed there was plenty of craft in Brady's game, as well as the zip in her shots, and she sealed the double break by winning a battle at the net.

Barely a couple of minutes later, Putintseva sent a service return long on match point, with Brady correctly challenging after the line judge failed to pick it out.

Brady had wins this year over world number one Ash Barty and Australian Open runner-up Garbine Muguruza before the tours went into lockdown in March, signalling perhaps there was a grand slam run in her.

Speaking of her win over Putintseva, Brady said on Amazon Prime: "The last couple of times I played her I got caught into playing her game and I don't think I'm better than her at just running and making balls, so I was definitely a lot more aggressive today.

"I came out with nerves obviously and I think she did too. I was happy with the way I started and then I think I was able to keep the momentum and build off that.

"I'm thrilled to be in the semi-finals here at the US Open. I'm just taking one match at a time. I'm very happy."

STATISTICAL BREAKDOWN  

Brady [28] beat Putintseva [23] 6-3 6-2

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS   

Brady – 22/24
Putintseva – 7/9

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS   

Brady – 6/0
Putintseva – 1/1

BREAK POINTS WON    

Brady – 5/7
Putintseva – 2/2

FIRST SERVE PERCENTAGE   

Brady – 63
Putintseva – 64

PERCENTAGE OF POINTS WON ON FIRST/SECOND SERVE   

Brady – 58/72
Putintseva – 52/44

TOTAL POINTS   

Brady – 54
Putintseva – 40

Victoria Azarenka joined Serena Williams in the US Open quarter-finals as Sofia Kenin crashed out on Monday.

Azarenka was pushed before the two-time Australian Open winner booked her spot in the last eight at Flushing Meadows.

Williams was also challenged before reaching the quarter-finals and her bid for a record-equalling 24th grand slam singles title remains on track.

But there was no such luck for this year's Australian Open champion as Kenin bowed out.

 

AZARENKA BATTLES THROUGH AS KENIN FALLS

Azarenka reached the US Open quarter-finals for the first time since 2015 after overcoming Czech 20th seed Karolina Muchova 5-7 6-1 6-4.

Muchova was on top early before Azarenka steadied to advance in two and a half hours.

The Belarusian, twice a US Open runner-up, was eventually too good for Muchova, who battled a leg injury late in the last-16 clash.

Azarenka won the Western & Southern Open ahead of the US Open, showing some good form since the WTA Tour season restarted amid the coronavirus pandemic.

She will next face Elise Mertens after the Belgian 16th seed proved far too good for Kenin – the second seed – 6-3 6-3 in just 75 minutes.

Mertens hit 19 winners and just seven unforced errors against Kenin, whose best run at her home slam came to an end.

The win saw Mertens reach the quarters for the second straight year.

 

SERENA SURVIVES SCARE

Williams came through a tough battle with Maria Sakkari, winning 6-3 6-7 (6-8) 6-3 after two hours, 28 minutes.

The American star looked set to endure more frustration in her quest to level Margaret Court's record when she trailed Sakkari by a break in the third set.

Sakkari came from a set down to defeat Williams at the Western & Southern Open.

However, she could not hold on to her advantage in the decisive set as Williams produced a response befitting her status as a 23-time major champion.

"Just felt like I was able to compete longer. I was a little fatigued last time and had some cramps, but I felt like Maria played a completely, I felt like she almost played better today. She's such a good competitor," Williams said.

"It was a really intense match."

 

PIRONKOVA'S FAIRYTALE RUN CONTINUES

Awaiting Williams in the quarter-finals is Tsvetana Pironkova, whose run continued with a 6-4 6-7 (5-7) 6-3 victory over Alize Cornet.

A former Wimbledon semi-finalist, Pironkova is back playing for the first time since 2017.

The Bulgarian has put together an impressive run in New York, where she had only reached the fourth round once previously – in 2012.

Daniil Medvedev and Dominic Thiem continued their impressive runs to reach the US Open quarter-finals on Monday.

With Novak Djokovic out, the men's draw in New York is wide open and a first-time grand slam winner will be crowned at Flushing Meadows.

Medvedev and Thiem are the main contenders and they showed just why with tremendous last-16 wins.

Meanwhile, Andrey Rublev and Alex de Minaur also reached the quarter-finals.

 

MEDVEDEV MARVELLOUS AGAIN

Last year's runner-up, Medvedev crushed American Frances Tiafoe 6-4 6-1 6-0.

The Russian third seed was in impressive form to win through in just 98 minutes on Arthur Ashe Stadium.

Medvedev has lost just 29 games through his opening four wins at the tournament.

He is into the quarter-finals of a major for just the second time in his career and first since his run to the decider last year.

THIEM FLIES PAST AUGER-ALIASSIME

A three-time grand slam runner-up, Thiem was expected to be tested by Canadian 15th seed Felix Auger-Aliassime.

But the Austrian second seed needed just over two hours to advance 7-6 (7-4) 6-1 6-1.

While Thiem was solid with 23 winners and 24 unforced errors, Auger-Aliassime finished with 51 unforced errors.

Although Djokovic is out and Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal are not playing, Thiem said he was staying focused.

"There is a difference that none of these three are left in the draw. That's the only difference," he said.

"But for me personally, it never mattered. I just always tried to focus on my next match. My focus or my concentration, it's the same. It doesn't matter if I play one of the big three members or if I play somebody else.

"Well, I mean, what happened happened. Nobody of the other players has any or had any influence of that. We just need to focus and focus on ourselves.

"Of course, it's probably a little bit of a bigger chance for all of us to win the first slam, but basically the things didn't change that much, at least for myself."

 

RUBLEV, DE MINAUR REACH QUARTERS

Next up for Medvedev is Rublev in an all-Russian quarter-final.

Rublev overcame last year's semi-finalist Matteo Berrettini 4-6 6-3 6-3 6-3 in a clash between two seeds.

He reached a second career grand slam quarter-final and first since the 2017 US Open.

De Minaur's run continued with a 7-6 (8-6) 6-3 6-2 victory over Vasek Pospisil.

The Australian 21st seed is into the last eight at a major for the first time in his career and will face Thiem.

World number one Ashleigh Barty will not defend her French Open title.

Barty, 24, was last in action in February, having opted to skip the US Open due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Australian has decided against defending her crown in Paris due to COVID-19 and concerns over her preparation.

"It has been a difficult decision to make but unfortunately I will not be competing in Europe this year," Barty wrote on Instagram on Tuesday.

"Last year's French Open was the most special tournament of my career so this is not a decision I have made lightly.

"There are two reasons for my decision. The first is the health risks that still exist with COVID. The second is my preparation, which has not been ideal without my coach being able to train with me due to the state border closures in Australia.

"I wish the players and the French Federation all the best for a successful tournament.

"I now look forward to a long pre-season and the summer in Australia. It has been a challenging year for everyone and although I am disappointed on a tennis front, the health and wellbeing of my family and my team will always be my priority. Thank you to my fans for your continued support, I can't wait to play for you again."

Roland Garros is due to begin on September 27 with fans in attendance.

Serena Williams is hopeful there will be no problems with allowing fans at the French Open but conceded she has questions for organisers about their plans.

The French Tennis Federation (FFT) announced on Monday that 11,500 fans would be allowed into Roland Garros for the rescheduled clay-court grand slam, though the grounds would split into three separate sites.

Pushed back from May 24 to September 27, players will be required to stay in one of the two designated hotels to prevent the potential spread of COVID-19.

Williams, speaking after beating Maria Sakkari to reach the quarter-finals of the US Open, expressed some bemusement at the restrictions being placed on players amid fans being allowed into the facility.

"I was hoping to stay at my apartment in Paris, but, you know, I'm just taking it a day at a time," she told a media conference. 

"I feel the French, they are doing the best that they can. You know, it's hard. Every organisation, every country is trying to do the best that they can in this pandemic, so I can't point fingers and tell them what to do, because I'm not running the tournament.

"If there are fans, then we should be able to stay elsewhere. Yeah, that's interesting, because there is no private housing but there's fans.

"But I kind of knew that. It's just for me I'm super conservative because I do have some serious health issues, so I try to stay away from public places, because I have been in a really bad position in the hospital a few times.

"I don't want to end up in that position again, so I don't know. I'll just do my best to continue to keep – for me, I try to keep a 12-foot distance instead of six."

Asked if she is definitely planning to play in Paris, Williams replied: "I'm honestly taking it one day at a time. I'm going to have to make the best decision for my health.

"Obviously maybe it will be good for me to talk to the organisers just to see how that works with the crowd and how we will be protected.

"They have to make the best decision for them, and I have to do what's best for me. But I think it should be okay.

"I don't know what the number will be and how close they will be. I think there is a lot of factors that hopefully they are thinking about, and I'm sure that they are, as this is a global pandemic.

"I still have some questions, but I'm really kind of, ironically, focused on New York but it's kind of hard because these grand slams are so close to each other this year."

Novak Djokovic faces being labelled a "bad guy" for the rest of his career after his US Open disqualification for striking a line judge with a ball, and John McEnroe has told him he needs to embrace that role.

World number one Djokovic was 6-5 down in the first set of his fourth-round match against Pablo Carrena Busta on Sunday when he struck a ball in frustration as he headed back to his chair.

The wayward ball struck a female line judge in the throat and caused her to stumble to the floor, and although Djokovic pleaded with the officials, he was defaulted and disqualified from the competition.

It is the latest in a string of controversies involving Djokovic, who earlier this year attracted widespread criticism for the organisation of the Adria Tour event at the height of the coronavirus pandemic, with the competition failing to adhere to social distancing guidelines and resulting in several players – including the Serbian – testing positive for COVID-19.

He has since announced plans to lead a breakaway union despite opposition from the likes of Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, and McEnroe – who himself was depicted as something of an 'enfant terrible' during his playing days – thinks Djokovic has to accept his new-found villain status.

"The pressure just got to him. I think a lot has been going on off the court," four-time US Open winner McEnroe told ESPN.

"It's obviously affected him and whether he likes it or not, he's going to be the bad guy the rest of his career.

"If he embraces that role, I think he could recover. He's got a lot of things going for him, but this is a stain that he's not going to be able to erase."

But McEnroe, who was defaulted from the Australian Open in 1990 for three code violations in a single match, was scathing of Djokovic's decision to not hold a post-match media conference and instead apologise via social media.

"You've got to man up," the American added. "It made no sense to me. In the past I've seen him take responsibility when he's blown it. In this case it makes it even worse.

"So what if he apologised on Twitter... that's not good enough."

Nick Kyrgios reckons he would have been slapped with a lengthy ban if he had struck a linesperson, as Novak Djokovic did at the US Open.

World number one Djokovic was stunningly disqualified after hitting the official with a ball during his last-16 clash with Pablo Carreno Busta.

It was not intentional, but nonetheless the Serbian's careless act saw him kicked out of the tournament he was favourite to win.

There is no love lost between Kyrgios, who has endured his own disciplinary issues, and Djokovic, with the Australian claiming he would suffer a far worse punishment.

He tweeted: "Swap me for jokers incident. 'Accidentally hitting the ball kid in the throat' how many years would I be banned for?"

Underneath was a list of three answers, offering followers to choose the length of his hypothetical ban in years.

Of the available options – five, 10 and 20 years – the latter was the most popular, with more than half of the almost 160,000 votes cast.

Kyrgios has been critical of Djokovic's approach to the coronavirus crisis, with the 17-time grand slam winner having organised an exhibition tour at which several players contracted COVID-19.

In May last year, Kyrgios was himself defaulted from a match after reacting badly to receiving a game penalty for unsportsmanlike conduct in a second-round clash with Casper Ruud at the Italian Open.

Kyrgios kicked out in disgust and launched a chair before walking off as he was disqualified by the umpire.

Djokovic did not partake in any media activities after his moment of madness, but he did post a message on Instagram.

"This whole situation has left me really sad and empty," he said.

"I checked on the line person and the tournament told me that thank God she is feeling ok. I'm extremely sorry to have caused her such stress. So unintended. So wrong. I'm not disclosing her name to respect her privacy.

"As for the disqualification, I need to go back within and work on my disappointment and turn this all into a lesson for my growth and evolution as a player and human being.

"I apologise to the @usopen tournament and everyone associated for my behaviour. I'm very grateful to my team and family for being my rock support, and my fans for always being there with me. Thank you and I'm so sorry."

Djokovic's exit means there will be a first-time major winner in the men's draw in New York.

Former US Open champion Naomi Osaka returned to the quarter-finals at Flushing Meadows, while Shelby Rogers prevailed in a thriller against Petra Kvitova.

Osaka reached the US Open quarters for the first time since winning the grand slam in 2018 after beating 14th seed Anett Kontaveit in straight sets on Sunday.

Rogers emerged from the brink of defeat to stun sixth seed and two-time major champion Kvitova in New York.

Jennifer Brady and Yulia Putintseva also progressed from the round of 16.

 

OSAKA ON TRACK FOR SECOND US OPEN CROWN

The Japanese star and former world number one was too good for Kontaveit 6-3 6-4 on Arthur Ashe Stadium.

Two-time slam champion Osaka – the fourth seed – did not face a break point as she advanced in 72 minutes.

"I thought it was pretty good," Osaka said. "If I'm reflecting on attitude, I'm pretty sure it was up there with my top matches of this short year."

ROGERS FENDS OFF MATCH POINTS

Awaiting Osaka is Rogers, who saved four match points in a memorable 7-6 (7-5) 3-6 7-6 (8-6) triumph.

Rogers fended off three match points on her serve at 4-5 in the final set and then another on Kvitova's racquet at 6-5 in the tie-break.

The American and world number 93 is now through to the quarter-finals of her home slam for the first time, albeit behind closed doors amid the coronavirus pandemic.

"Day 72 in the bubble," Rogers told reporters. "It's been a long time here in New York. I'm happy to be sticking around for some more."

BRADY AND PUTINTSEVA TO MEET IN LAST EIGHT

American 28th seed Brady will contest her maiden grand slam quarter-finals after blitzing 2016 US Open champion and former number one Angelique Kerber 6-1 6-4.

Brady broke serve four times and hit 25 winners to upstage three-time major winner Kerber.

Having lost her first two fourth-round berths at majors – both in 2017 – Brady said: "I don't think I was really ready physically or mentally to make the fourth round of two slams in one year. Definitely came as a huge surprise to me. Honestly, I didn't really believe that I belonged at that level or that it was achievable for me.

"So to be honest, I wasn't ready mentally or physically before it. And, you know, this year, starting the beginning of the year, I felt like a different player. I'm not putting expectations on myself but also not surprised when I'm doing well at a tournament."

Next up is two-time French Open quarter-finalist Putintseva, who ousted eighth seed Petra Martic 6-3 2-6 6-4.

Alexander Zverev and Denis Shapovalov reached the US Open quarter-finals as Novak Djokovic sensationally defaulted on Sunday.

Djokovic's bid for an 18th grand slam title came to an end after he was disqualified at Flushing Meadows.

The Serbian's stunning exit has opened up the men's draw, with a first-time grand slam winner set to be crowned in New York.

Zverev and Shapovalov remain in contention for their maiden major triumphs after impressive wins.

 

ZVEREV, SHAPOVALOV INTO LAST EIGHT

Zverev, the German fifth seed, needed just one hour, 34 minutes to crush Spaniard Alejandro Davidovich Fokina 6-2 6-2 6-1.

The 23-year-old Zverev progressed to his fourth grand slam quarter-final and first at the US Open after the comfortable win.

He hit 39 winners and 22 unforced errors in a straightforward victory.

Shapovalov, 21, also progressed thanks to a hard-fought 6-7 (0-7) 6-3 6-4 6-3 win over David Goffin.

The Canadian 12th seed needed three and a half hours and 51 winners to reach a grand slam quarter-final for the first time.

Shapovalov became the first Canadian man to reach the quarter-finals at the US Open in the Open Era.

Before Sunday, Shapovalov would have been expecting to face Djokovic in the last eight before the drama on Arthur Ashe Stadium.

 

DJOKOVIC DEFAULTS

The favourite to win the major, Djokovic was defaulted during his fourth-round clash with Pablo Carreno Busta.

Djokovic had just been broken to fall 6-5 behind in the first set when he hit a ball that struck a linesperson, leading to his disqualification.

The three-time US Open winner later posted an apology on social media as he bowed out in extraordinary circumstances.

"This whole situation has left me really sad and empty. I checked on the linesperson and the tournament told me that thank God she is feeling ok," Djokovic wrote. "I'm extremely sorry to have caused her such stress. So unintended. So wrong. I'm not disclosing her name to respect her privacy.

"As for the disqualification, I need to go back within and work on my disappointment and turn this all into a lesson for my growth and evolution as a player and human being.

"I apologise to the @usopen tournament and everyone associated for my behaviour. I'm very grateful to my team and family for being my rock support, and my fans for always being there with me. Thank you and I'm so sorry."

 

CORIC INTO FIRST QUARTER-FINAL

Borna Coric backed up his incredible win over Stefanos Tsitsipas by easing past Australian Jordan Thompson 7-5 6-1 6-3.

The Croatian 27th seed was too good for Thompson on his way to a first major quarter-final, where Zverev awaits.

"Look, definitely it's a very good chance for all of us. Again, like I said, I think maybe like a couple minutes ago, I need to focus on my next match and on my next opponent, which is a very, very tough opponent," Coric said afterwards.

"There's going to be new grand slam champion, for sure. Yeah, that could potentially can happen that some of us can do something more in the future. But again, it doesn't mean anything. I'm really looking forward to seeing who it's going to be. I think we all have a very good chance. Yeah, it's going to be very interesting.

"For me, the most important is just to focus on the next match, like I said at the beginning. I cannot focus on the finals or what happened earlier in the day. I just need to focus on my next match."

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