Eighth seed Angelique Kerber defeated Venus Williams in emphatic fashion to reach the semi-finals of the BNP Paribas Open on Thursday. The German won in straight sets 7-6(3), 6-3 in 93 minutes. From the get-go, Kerber made strong in-roads into Williams' serve, especially the second serve and was just as relentless on her own serves.
A fact that stood was that not only did Kerber win 68% points off her second serve, she also 62% return points on Williams' second serve. Williams also struggled to find the range of her shots which had flown easily up to the fourth round (partly thanks to the problem affecting her right knee, which had been taped during the match).
Following the loss, Williams will exit the top-40 of the WTA rankings since she had been defending semi-final's points from 2018. Speaking to reporters after her win, Kerber said, "Venus is just such a great player and an amazing champion.
It’s always an honor to share the court with her. She’s still playing at such a high level. She has a lot of experience. She tried to change the rhythm a lot. It’s always tough to play against her." This is Kerber's third semi-final in Indian Wells, coming nearly six years after her last appearance (in 2013, lost to Caroline Wozniacki).
Before 2013, Kerber had also reached the semi-final in the event in 2012, bowing out to Victoria Azarenka. Kerber's next opponent is Belinda Bencic who defeated Karolina Pliskova in their quarter-final played earlier on Thursday. Photo Credit: WTA Tennis