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By Adrianna Outlaw | Friday, November 3, 2017

Julia Goerges

Julia Goerges earned her seventh straight win, a 6-2, 7-6 (4) victory over top-seeded Kristina Mladenovic, to power into the WTA Elite Trophy Zhuhai semifinals.

Photo credit: WTA Elite Trophy Zhuhai

Julia Goerges celebrated her 29th birthday yesterday and unwrapped a semifinal appearance today.

The seventh-seeded Goerges scored her seventh straight win, a 6-2, 7-6 (4) victory over top-seeded Kristina Mladenovic, to power into the WTA Elite Trophy Zhuhai semifinals.

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Goerges finished round-robin play with a 2-0 record in the Azalea Group to set up a semifinal against Anastasija Sevastova, who clinched the Cameillia Group yesterday.

Goerges took the court today needing to win just one set to advance to the final four, but was committed to completing the win.

"I really wanted to win that match," Goerges told the media in Zhuhai. "It didn't matter if I had to win one set, but I don't want to go out with losing the match and still being in the semifinals. I think that's a bit weird."

Empowered by her run to the Moscow title—her first title in six years—Goerges rolled through the opening set then prevailed in a tight second set.

The 10th-ranked Mladenovic’s serve let her down as she slumped to her 12th consecutive loss in a defeat that will cost her a spot in the Top 10. Mladenovic hit nine double faults. The former French Open doubles champion has not won a match since August.

Mladenovic double faulted to open the tie break as Goerges raced out to a 5-1 lead. The top seed narrowed the gap to 4-5 before Goerges sealed the 96-minute victory with a volley winner.

The Goerges-Sevastova semifinal is a rematch of the Mallorca final in June, which the 15th-seeded Latvian won 6-4, 3-6, 6-3. Overall, Goerges leads their head-to-head series 3-2, which includes their first-ever meeting at the Prague Challenger back in 2007.

“We know each other for a very long time and have a lot of respect for each other," Goerges told WTA of Sevastova. "She's a very tricky player, and she has had a great season, as well. It's just about battling it out tomorrow and the better one should win."

CoCo Vandeweghe, who is projected to crack the Top 10, will play Ashleigh Barty in tomorrow's second semifinal, which will be their first meeting. 

Barbora Strycova held a 5-0 lead over Sloane Stephens when the US Open champion retired with a knee injury. 

Stephens is scheduled to join Vandeweghe, Alison Riske and Shelby Rogers on the United States squad which will face host Belarus in next weekend's Fed Cup final.


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