Cool Pannetta upsets Kvitova to return to U.S. Open semis

Wed Sep 9, 2015 2:33pm EDT
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By Steve Keating

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Italian veteran Flavia Pennetta reached the U.S. Open semi-finals for the second time in three years on Wednesday, outsmarting fifth seed Petra Kvitova 4-6 6-4 6-2 to add to the

Czech's Flushing Meadows frustration.

The Italian flag will feature prominently in the semi-finals with the 33-year-old Pennetta joined in the last four by 32-year-old compatriot Roberta Vinci, who booked her spot on Tuesday with a victory over Frenchwoman Kristina Mladenovic.

“I was just trying to fight every ball, running and trying to push the most I can,” the Italian said in an on-court interview.

“The second set I was really in trouble, but I was just keep going, playing and playing. It’s unbelievable."

Pennetta has always been at home on the New York hardcourts having now advanced to quarter-finals or beyond in six of her last seven visits to the National Tennis Center.

The same courts, however, have not been kind to Kvitova, the two-time Wimbledon champion, who never ventured past the fourth round until this year.

Kvitova, one only two players to beat Serena Williams this season, had been in superb form winning her final U.S. Open tuneup in New Haven and carried that momentum into Flushing Meadows, reaching the quarter-finals without dropping a set.   Continued...

Flavia Pennetta of Italy celebrates after defeating Petra Kvitova of the Czech Republic in their quarterfinals match at the U.S. Open Championships tennis tournament in New York, September 9, 2015. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton