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French Open: Jelena Ostapenko and Timea Bacsinszky advance to semifinals after rain delays

Timea Bacsinszky hits a shot in her quarterfinal match against Kristina Mladenovic on Tuesday. (Getty Images).

Rain forced two different delays during Tuesday’s French Open women’s quarterfinals, but, after hours of waiting, two semifinalists were named.  No. 30 Timea Bacsinszky defeated Kristina Mladenovic in a two-set battle, 6-4, 6-4, and 19-year-old Jelena Ostapenko earned her spot in the round of 4 after defeating No. 11 Caroline Wozniacki 4-6, 6-2, 6-2

Bacsinszky fought for her points against No. 13 Mladenovic and held a 6-4, 4-3 before the second rain break delay. The Swiss player said the weather posed challenges for the athletes throughout the duration of the day, but she remains grateful for the opportunity to play another round. 

“It was really difficult because we had all the seasons rolled into one today. We had a sand storm, a hurricane and we almost had snow too. It was really tough to keep my concentration all day long,”Bacsinszky said after the match. “ For many years, big things have happened for me at Roland-Garros. I’m really happy to be through to my second semi-final here. I feel really privileged.”

Bacsinszky will now face Ostapenko, the youngest player to compete in a French Open semifinal in the last ten years, on Thursday. Both Ostapenko and Bacsinszky will celebrate their birthdays- 20 and 28 respectively- when they face each other in the semifinal. Bacsinszky is seeded No. 30 while Ostapenko is unseeded.

The Latvian native struggled at first against Wozniacki, dropping 0-5 to start but rallying for the win to record third consecutive victory against Bacsinszky and move on to her first semi-final match.

“I’m really happy I still can’t believe it. I’m really happy to play here, it’s an amazing tournament,” Ostapenko said. “It was tough because we had to go away two times from the court. Caroline is a tough opponent. She was playing great. I had to stay aggressive. I was missing sometimes but in the end it worked out. It will be really great to play here when it will be my birthday. I hope I can enjoy it.”