Serena Williams will not be winning an Open Era-best 23rd Grand Slam title, at least not yet. Williams fell in the semifinals at the US Open on Thursday, losing to 10th seed Karolina Pliskova. Pliskova won after a second set tiebreak, 6-2, 7-6(5).
The first set went easily in Pliskova's favor, but Williams started picking up the pieces in the second set. She couldn't get an edge over Pliskova in the set, though, and it eventually went to a tiebreak. There, Pliskova nailed all of her first three shots, but Williams was the first to break her serve in the tiebreak.
Pliskova recovered and ultimately won the tiebreak, and the match.
Williams looked completely lost in the first set against Pliskova. She made 24 unforced errors and hit just 16 winners while getting just 55 percent of her first serves in. But she was even more out of sorts than the stat sheet indicates, as Pliskova was able to easily take the first set despite committing 22 unforced errors and hitting just 17 winners herself.
Going into Thursday's match, Williams and Pliskova had only faced each other once before as professionals. That match was at Stanford in 2014 when Williams beat her in straight sets.
Pliskova advances to the finals on Saturday, where she will face the winner of the other semifinal between Angelique Kerber, the second seed, and Caroline Wozniacki, the unseeded player and former world No. 1.
With Williams' loss, Kerber is now the No. 1 player in the world. Kerber and Wozniacki will play shortly at Arthur Ashe Stadium.
The men's singles semifinals will take place on Friday. Novak Djokovic, the top seed, will take on Gael Monfils, the 10th seed, in one match. Stan Wawrinka, the third seed, will face Kei Nishikori, the sixth seed, in the other match. The first, Djokovic's match, will begin at 3 p.m. ET and will be broadcast on ESPN, with live streams available via WatchESPN.
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