Naomi Osaka storms past Lesia Tsurenko into the final four
Naomi Osaka breezed past Lesia Tsurenko 6-1, 6-1 on Wednesday as she eased into the last four of the US Open.
Osaka, 20, has seen her career take off in the last 12 months and her showing at Flushing Meadows is easily her best performance at a Grand Slam.
The Indian Wells winner dropped just two games in the entire match and had far too much for her opponent, who had stunned Caroline Wozniacki in the second round.
20th seed Osaka used a lethal ground game and solid serving to overwhelm a fatigued Tsurenko, who laboured in stifling conditions on the Arthur Ashe Stadium court.
Osaka, the first Japanese woman to reach a Grand Slam semi-final since Kimiko Date at Wimbledon in 1996, broke Tsurenko five times during a match that only lasted 57 minutes.
Tsurenko, the only unseeded woman to reach this stage of the tournament, appeared to be feeling the effects of her last-16 clash during which she struggled in the searing heat and at one point looked like she was about to collapse.
The Ukrainian had a small window to grab momentum but failed to cash in on her three break-point opportunities while trailing 4-1 in the second set and Osaka fought back before cruising through the final game.
Despite her dominance Osaka couldn't find what would have been her fourth bagel of the 2018 US Open but she is looking like the best-placed player to stop Serena Williams, having dropped just one set in the entire tournament.
In the last four she will face the winner of the late match between Carla Suarez Navarro and last year's runner-up Madison Keys.