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US Open: Serena halts Venus, progress, Novak in semis after a fiery Lopez encounter

New York, Sept 9 (RDI IBNS) Serena Williams dropped a set against her sister, Venus, to book a semifinal berth, as did Novak Djokovic after an exhausting match against Feliciano Lopez, here on day 9 of the US Open.

The reigning Womens champion, Serena took the first set 6-2. Venus made a strong return to clinch the second 6-1, but the younger sibling had the last laugh as she won the decider 6-3 to march towards her aim of a calendar slam. In the semis Serena will clash with theexperienced Roberta Vinci of Italy, who rallied past her French opponent Kristina Mladenovic 6-3, 5-7, 6-4. In the Womens Doubles category, World number one Indo-Swiss pair of Martina Hingis and Sania Mirza showed grit and determination to emerge on top winning their match in straight set. In the first set against a much younger pair of Yung-Jan Chan and Hao-Ching Chang of Taipei, they fought hard to win 7(7)-6(5). The second set was clinched easily as Mirza-Hingis duo played with skill and accuracy to take it 6-1 and reach the semis where they will face Italys Sara Errani and Flavia Penetta. In the Mens Singles category both the matches provided thrilling excitement as Novak Djokovic beat Feliciano Lopez under lights not before the world number one was tested by the Spaniard. In a four-set game Djokovic started off well with a 6-1 win but lost the next 3-6. Djoker came back strongly to take the third set 6-3 and take a 2-1 lead in the match but was stretched to the next by Lopez. The Spaniard dug deep and threatened to take it to the decider, but a composed Novak sealed it 7(7)-6(2) to reach the semis. Defending champion, Marin Cilic had a tough opponent in Frenchman Jo Wilfred Tsonga. The Muhammad Ali lookalike, Tsonga lost the first two sets 4-6, 4-6 but made a quick return to take the next two 6-3, 7(7)-6(3) to equalize the game in a cliff-hanger. Cilic pressed harder in the decider to win it 6-4 and set up a semifinal clash with the current world number one, Novak Djokovic.

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