Karolina Pliskova downs French hope Caroline Garcia to reach semi-finals
Karolina Pliskova v Caroline Garcia 7-6(3) 6-4

Karolina Pliskova downs French hope Caroline Garcia to reach semi-finals

Karolina Pliskova moved into the French Open semi-finals with a 7-6(3) 6-4 win over Caroline Garcia.

The second seed will seize the world number one ranking from Angelique Kerber – a shock first round casualty at Roland Garros – with victory over Simona Halep in the last four.

Garcia was France’s last hope in the men’s and women’s singles draw, but was second best in the big moments against her Czech rival.

The 23-year-old’s serve deserted her in the first set tie-break, winning just one point of five, and again in the 10th game of the second set as she was broken to concede the match.

"So far still before this tournament I was struggling on clay with almost everything. Didn't have my weapons on my side and the movement was terrible," Pliskova told a news conference.

"I don't think it's better, but somehow I'm just winning."

Her improvement in the clay-court major bears similarities with the career of Russia's Maria Sharapova, a self-described 'cow on ice' on the red dirt who still managed to lift the Suzanne Lenglen Cup twice.

Pliskova is taking baby steps.

"Today I can finally say I felt a little bit better on the court compared to the last matches," she said. "Yeah, the serve was good, which is also important."

Now the 25-year-old is one win away from becoming world number one next week.

"Coming into this tournament, there were a few people who told me, You have to be in the final to be No. 1. I was like, there is no chance I make the final here," she said with a smile.

But Pliskova is almost there.

She had never made it past the second round here and, after sometimes struggling in previous rounds, she perfectly handled Garcia, who was looking to become the first Frenchwoman in the last four since Marion Bartoli in 2011.

Despite the swirling winds sweeping the court, Pliskova made only 13 unforced errors – one every two games – while Garcia hit 31.

Related news

Grigor Dimitrov outlasts David Goffin in title thriller

Grigor Dimitrov outlasts David Goffin in title thriller

Grigor Dimitrov clinched the ATP World Tour Finals title with a thrilling 7-5 4-6 6-3 victory over David Goffin in a season-ending classic.

Dimitrov beats Sock to set up ATP Final against Goffin

Dimitrov beats Sock to set up ATP Final against Goffin

Grigor Dimitrov stood one win away from the biggest title of his career on Saturday after ending his Jack Sock jinx to reach the final of the season-ending ATP Finals at the 02 Arena.

David Goffin hits back to shock Roger Federer and reach final

David Goffin hits back to shock Roger Federer and reach final

Belgium's David Goffin pulled off a huge shock to beat six-times champion Roger Federer 2-6 6-3 6-4 in the semi-finals of the ATP Finals on Saturday.

Grigor Dimitrov demolishes Pablo Carreno Busta to reach ATP semi-finals in style

Grigor Dimitrov demolishes Pablo Carreno Busta to reach ATP semi-finals in style

Grigor Dimitrov produced a ruthless performance right out of the top drawer to brush aside a struggling Pablo Carreno Busta in the final group-stage match of the ATP Finals in London.

David Goffin eases past Dominic Thiem to set up Roger Federer clash

David Goffin eases past Dominic Thiem to set up Roger Federer clash

David Goffin beat Dominic Thiem 6-4, 6-1 on Friday to secure his place in the semi-finals of the ATP World Tour Finals where he will face Roger Federer.

Jack Sock seals semi-final spot as Alexander Zverev crashes out

Jack Sock seals semi-final spot as Alexander Zverev crashes out

Jack Sock reached the semi-finals of the ATP World Tour Finals on Thursday evening with 6-4, 1-6, 6-4 victory over Alexander Zverev.

Roger Federer storms back to beat Marin Cilic and complete group stage clean sweep

Roger Federer storms back to beat Marin Cilic and complete group stage clean sweep

Roger Federer recovered from a set down to beat Marin Cilic 6-7 6-4 6-1 and round off the group stages of the ATP World Tour Finals in style.

Dominic Thiem edges Pablo Carreno Busta to get first win in London

Dominic Thiem edges Pablo Carreno Busta to get first win in London

Dominic Thiem defeated Pablo Carreno Busta 6-3 3-6 6-4 on Wednesday to get his first win at the ATP World Tour Finals.

Grigor Dimitrov destroys David Goffin in London, seals top spot

Grigor Dimitrov destroys David Goffin in London, seals top spot

Grigor Dimitrov relinquished just two games as he demolished David Goffin at the ATP World Tour Finals in London, sealing top spot in Group Pete Sampras in the process.

RELATED NEWS

Grigor Dimitrov outlasts David Goffin in title thriller
Grigor Dimitrov v David Goffin 7-5 4-6 6-3

Grigor Dimitrov outlasts David Goffin in title thriller

Grigor Dimitrov clinched the ATP World Tour Finals title with a thrilling 7-5 4-6 6-3 victory over David Goffin in a season-ending classic.

Dimitrov beats Sock to set up ATP Final against Goffin
Grigor Dimitrov v Jack Sock 4-6 6-0 6-3

Dimitrov beats Sock to set up ATP Final against Goffin

Grigor Dimitrov stood one win away from the biggest title of his career on Saturday after ending his Jack Sock jinx to reach the final of the season-ending ATP Finals at the 02 Arena.

David Goffin hits back to shock Roger Federer and reach final
David Goffin v Roger Federer 2-6 6-3 6-4

David Goffin hits back to shock Roger Federer and reach final

Belgium's David Goffin pulled off a huge shock to beat six-times champion Roger Federer 2-6 6-3 6-4 in the semi-finals of the ATP Finals on Saturday.

Grigor Dimitrov demolishes Pablo Carreno Busta to reach ATP semi-finals in style
Grigor Dimitrov v Pablo Carreno Busta 6-1 6-1

Grigor Dimitrov demolishes Pablo Carreno Busta to reach ATP semi-finals in style

Grigor Dimitrov produced a ruthless performance right out of the top drawer to brush aside a struggling Pablo Carreno Busta in the final group-stage match of the ATP Finals in London.

David Goffin eases past Dominic Thiem to set up Roger Federer clash
David Goffin v Dominic Thiem 6-4, 6-1

David Goffin eases past Dominic Thiem to set up Roger Federer clash

David Goffin beat Dominic Thiem 6-4, 6-1 on Friday to secure his place in the semi-finals of the ATP World Tour Finals where he will face Roger Federer.

Jack Sock seals semi-final spot as Alexander Zverev crashes out
Jack Sock v Alexander Zverev 6-4, 1-6, 6-4

Jack Sock seals semi-final spot as Alexander Zverev crashes out

Jack Sock reached the semi-finals of the ATP World Tour Finals on Thursday evening with 6-4, 1-6, 6-4 victory over Alexander Zverev.

Roger Federer storms back to beat Marin Cilic and complete group stage clean sweep
Roger Federer v Marin Cilic 6-7 6-4 6-1

Roger Federer storms back to beat Marin Cilic and complete group stage clean sweep

Roger Federer recovered from a set down to beat Marin Cilic 6-7 6-4 6-1 and round off the group stages of the ATP World Tour Finals in style.

Dominic Thiem edges Pablo Carreno Busta to get first win in London
Dominic Thiem v Pablo Carreno Busta 6-3 3-6 6-4

Dominic Thiem edges Pablo Carreno Busta to get first win in London

Dominic Thiem defeated Pablo Carreno Busta 6-3 3-6 6-4 on Wednesday to get his first win at the ATP World Tour Finals.

Grigor Dimitrov destroys David Goffin in London, seals top spot
Grigor Dimitrov v David Goffin 6-0 6-2

Grigor Dimitrov destroys David Goffin in London, seals top spot

Grigor Dimitrov relinquished just two games as he demolished David Goffin at the ATP World Tour Finals in London, sealing top spot in Group Pete Sampras in the process.