Serena Williams shocked by Shelby Rogers in Lexington
Last Updated: 15/08/20 1:08pm
Serena Williams suffered a shock exit to world No 116 Shelby Rogers at the Lexington Open on Friday.
Rogers took six of the last eight points after trailing 3-1 in the tie-breaker to beat Williams 1-6 6-4 7-6 (7-5) to reach the semi-finals.
Williams had survived two scares already in the tournament, against Bernarda Pera and sister Venus to reach the quarter-finals but could not do the same against her fellow American.
Williams admits she has more to give and takes away from the defeat the fact she can up her game.
Williams said: "I have only good things to take, I can play a lot better, that's the big thing I can take. So it's good, it's good to know I can play a lot lot better."
In her first-ever meeting with Williams Rogers earned three break points - each one a set point - and converted the third when Williams dumped a forehand into the net.
There were no breaks in the third set, and after Williams took the early lead in the tie-breaker, she was her own undoing with miss after miss, including a long backhand return to end it.
Rogers will face Jil Teichmann for a place in the final after the Swiss required seven match points to defeat CiCi Bellis 6-2 6-4.
"It's every kid's dream when they are growing up watching her play and to be able to do something like that," said Rogers, who has yet to get used to the unfamiliar surroundings as the event is being played without any fans in attendance due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
"Weird circumstances. Weird setting. But a win is a win. I know we're all just happy to be playing."
Jennifer Brady qualified for her second semi-final of the season following a straight sets 6-1 6-2 win over Marie Bouzkova, while 16-year-old Coco Gauff battled back to defeat Tunisian Ons Jabeur 4-6 6-4 6-1.
This hard-court event in Kentucky is a tune-up ahead of the US Open which starts August 31 in New York.
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Simona Halep cruised through to the semi-finals of the Prague Open with a straight-sets defeat of Magdalena Frech.
The top seed, who was playing her first tournament since the season resumed, took less than an hour to beat Frech 6-2 6-0.
Elise Mertens secured her place into her first semi-final of the year, following a three-set 6-4 1-6 6-4 win over Eugenie Bouchard and will take on Kristyna Pliskova.