June 24 (Reuters) – Italian qualifier Camila Giorgi continued her impressive form at the Eastbourne championships by removing top seed Aryna Sabalenka in the quarter-finals on Thursday.
Giorgi, a quarter-finalist at Wimbledon in 2018, used her aggressive game to claim a 7-6(5) 0-6 6-4 victory and set up a semi-final against Estonian Anett Kontaveit.
Former French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko is also showing impressive form ahead of Wimbledon, reaching the semi-finals with a 1-6 7-5 6-2 victory over Russia’s Daria Kasatkina,
She will face either fellow Latvian Anastasija Sevastova or Elena Rybakina in her first Tour-level semi-final since 2019.
“I get very excited, but when it starts I get very sad because it’s very short, the grass season,” former junior Wimbledon champion Ostapenko said.
“I wish it could be longer, I love to play on grass.”
Sabalenka had won her only previous meeting with Giorgi and looked on course for a comeback victory when she reeled off the second set with a flurry of winners to level the match.
The Belarusian then earned the first break of serve in the deciding set but Giorgi’s game re-ignited to claim victory.
“It was a great match and very good level,” she said. “At the end I think it was more mental than physical.”
Giorgi knocked out fifth seed Karolina Pliskova in the opening round, also in three sets, meaning it is the first time in her career that she has had two wins over top-10 players at the same tournament.
Kontaveit battled back to beat qualifier Viktorija Golubic 2-6 7-6(2) 7-5.
Reporting by Martyn Herman Editing by Toby Davis