Emma Raducanu described her first WTA Tour semi-final as “pretty cool” as her positive week at the Korea Open continued.
The 19-year-old hadn’t won a match on the main tour when she won her maiden Grand Slam title at the US Open and now, just over a year later, she’s qualified for the first time in the last four.
Raducanu is yet to drop a set in Seoul and played her best game so far to defeat third seed Magda Linette 6-2 6-2, making it three straight wins for the first time since her triumph in New York.
“I think Magda felt it a bit physically,” Raducanu told reporters. “She had a lot of games and good wins because she’s a very tough player, and sometimes it catches up with the body.
“I think it’s pretty cool to make my first semi-final and to build my way around the circuit in the right way, to get through the stages.”
Raducanu, who fell at the first hurdle to defend her US Open title last month, slipped to 77th in the world rankings after a career high of 10th but could return to the top 50 if she can win the title.
She got off to a good start, twice breaking Linette and comfortably holding her own serve en route to a 5-1 lead before sealing the first set after 35 minutes.
Linette, who lost to Czech teenager Linda Fruhvirtova in the Chennai Open final last week, immediately fought back in second, winning her first service game to love.
The 30-year-old Pole then led 0-40 on Raducanu’s serve, but the British number one dug deep to save three break points before breaking Linette’s serve twice in a row.
Linette’s physical struggles were becoming increasingly evident, and although she was keen to force Raducanu to serve him, it was no problem for the Kent teenager.
Raducanu will meet Latvian seed Jelena Ostapenko on Saturday for a place in the final.