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Williams walked off Arthur Ashe Stadium court with a wave and twirl to await the victor of the other semi-final between Japan's Naomi Osaka and American Madison Keys, who lost last year's final to Sloane Stephens.

Osaka, who was born in Japan but moved to the United States at age 3, was followed on Arthur Ashe Stadium by Kei Nishikori facing Marin Cilic in a men's quarterfinal.

The American will contest her 31st major final and her ninth in NY.

Williams raced to a 6-4 6-0 victory over Magda Linette before crushing Germany's Carina Witthoeft 6-2 6-2 in the second round.

'I just was like "I've got to play a little better", the crowd helped me out after the first two games, ' she said of her start. Nishikori, 8 years older, was like a "really big kid" who liked to play video games and have fun like her.

Naomi Osaka, whose father is Haitian, is the first Japanese woman since the start of the Open era to reach the U.S. Open semifinals and the first to reach any Grand Slam semifinal since Kimiko Date did it in 1996. So I know how to volley, but I usually come [to the net] just to shake hands.

The US Open has been her most successful Grand Slam and she has had big match experience on the Arthur Ashe Stadium before, having brought Maria Sharapova's high profile run to an end previous year in the fourth round. So I'm really pleased with where my game is at at the moment.

"Today was not my day, obviously", Tsurenko said.

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"She does a really good job. of holding the baseline and redirecting the ball", Keys said. In her third-round match, she was even quicker, dominating Aliaksandra Sasnovich, 6-0, 6-0, in 50 minutes.

Tsurenko labored in the heat during her fourth-round victory over Marketa Vondrousova, having her temperature and blood checked during a medical timeout in the first set and almost quitting when she trailed early in the second.

Suarez Navarro enjoyed a fine run in NY, where she upstaged sixth seed Caroline Garcia and ended Maria Sharapova's impeccable record under the lights in the Big Apple, however, the 30th seed could not match Keys.

A year ago, Williams missed the US Open because she gave birth to her daughter, Olympia, during the tournament.

It was another hot afternoon Wednesday, with temperatures in the 30s C, but feeling much hotter due to the humidity.

"There is no stopping the Japanese players", screamed the Nikkan Gendai tabloid, after the pair became the first from the country to secure semi-final berths in both singles competitions during a Grand Slam.

"I hate matches like this", Tsurenko said.


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