We now know who will be in the semifinals of the 2020 United States Open from Flushing Meadows, New York. Among the final eight are two American women–Serena Williams of Saginaw, MI (a 23-time grand slam champion) and Jennifer Brady of Harrisburg, PA, who is looking for her first grand slam singles championship.
Williams will be facing Victoria Azarenka of Belarus in a battle of mothers. Williams is now entering her 14th U.S. Open semifinal in women’s singles. The only times she has not reached the final when being in the semifinals were in 2009, 2015, and 2016. In 2009, Williams lost after being awarded a foot fault in a straight set loss to Kim Clijsters of Belgium, and is remembered for her inappropriate conduct towards the linesperson who called the foot fault. As a result, Williams was fined $10,500. In 2015, Williams lost in straight sets to Roberta Vinci of Italy. Vinci was the only player in 2015 that beat Williams at a major. In a remarkable season of tennis, Williams won the Australian Open, French Open and Wimbledon. Then in 2016, Williams lost to Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic.
Brady meanwhile will face Naomi Osaka of Japan, the fourth seed. Osaka will be the heavy favourite, having won the 2018 U.S. Open and 2019 Australian Open. In the quarterfinals, Brady the 28th seed, defeated Yulia Putintseva of Kazakhstan, 6-3, 6-2. Williams defeated Tsvetana Pironkova of Bulgaria 4-6, 6-3, 6-2.
In other quarterfinal matches, Osaka beat American Shelby Rogers 6-3, 6-4, while Azarenka steamrolled past 16th ranked Elise Mertens of Belgium 6-1, 6-0. Azarenka is a two-time Australian Open champion.
On the men’s side, there will be a first-time grand slam singles winner at the U.S. Open. The semifinals will have Pablo Carreno Busta of Spain playing Dominic Thiem of Austria, while Alexander Zverev of Germany will play Daniil Medvedev of Russia. Thiem and Medvedev have been to a grand slam final before but have never won.