Stephens knocks out Sevastova in three set thriller

Local hopeful Sloane Stephens defeated Anastasija Sevastova to reach her second grand slam semi-final at the US Open on Tuesday.

The American survived a second set comeback to beat the 16th seeded Sevastova 6-3, 3-6, 7-6(4) on the hard courts of the Arthur Ashe Arena in Flushing Meadows.

Stephens – who played in the 2013 Australian Open semi-final – managed to save seven crucial breakpoints throughout the encounter while keeping her first serve percentage high.

The 24-year-old bounced back from losing her opening service game to run out to a 4-1 lead after a double break in the opening set.

The second set was a much tighter affair, with just the one break of serve from Sevastova in the fourth game being the difference between the two baseline hitters.

In the deciding set, a flurry of breaks saw the duo tied at four games all. Following that, they swapped strong service holds to force a tiebreaker.

It was still anyone’s match at three-all, but a series of pressure plays from Stephens saw her win four of the final five points for a memorable win.

Waiting for Stephens in the final four is the winner of the match between seven-time grand slam winner Venus Williams and 13th seed Petra Kvitova.