This post will be updated with the latest action from Day 11 of the Australian Open in Melbourne.
Thanks to a huge upset in Melbourne, American Sofia Kenin has earned a spot in the Australian Open final.
Kenin knocked off No. 1 Ashleigh Barty in straight sets in their semifinal match on Thursday 7-6 (6), 7-5 at Melbourne Park. She saved two set points in each set to secure the win, too, officially marking her deepest run at a Grand Slam event. The 21-year-old had never made it past the fourth round at a major.
A win for Barty would have made her the first Australian woman to reach the Finals at the event in 40 years. Instead, Barty becomes the first American woman to do so, other than either Serena or Venus Williams, since 1995, according to ESPN.
Clutch Kenin@SofiaKenin collects a 7-6(6) 7-5 win over world No. 1 Barty to reach her first Grand Slam final and become the youngest Melbourne finalist since 2008.#AO2020 | #AusOpen pic.twitter.com/vPxrtFzgZU— #AusOpen (@AustralianOpen) January 30, 2020
“I’m just so speechless. I honestly can’t believe this,” Kenin said after the match, which lasted nearly two hours. “I’ve just dreamed about this moment since I was five years old with that Andy Roddick video … I’m just so speechless, so thankful. I’ve worked so hard to get here.”
Kenin held just a 1-4 record against Barty heading into Thursday, too, but did rally back at the Rogers Cup in a three-set thriller in August to pick up her first win against the top-ranked player in the world. Kenin, the No. 14 seed, beat 15-year-old Coco Gauff in the fourth round of the tournament and then beat Tunisia’s Ons Jabeur in straight sets to reach the semifinals. She hadn’t faced a seeded opponent in the tournament until Barty.
Kenin will now take on either No. 4 Simona Halep or Garbine Muguruza in the final. While she will face a two-time Grand Slam winner either way it shakes out, Kenin said she’s not worried about that match just yet.
“I’m not even going to look,” Kenin said, via the Associated Press. “I’m just going to relax and enjoy this moment. I’m just looking forward to the final.”
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