The American held her nerve to break early in the second set and added an insurance break for a 5-1 lead and closed out the upset on her second match point a game later when Halep went long with a return. "Clay is still not my favourite surface, it's certainly not my number one," added the American. But with a Porsche 718 Boxster going to the tournament winner along with prize money, Vandeweghe admits she has plenty of motivation to win a first title on the alien surface.
Coco #Vandeweghe was unplayable in a straight-sets defeat of Simona Halep - can she summon that same form vs world no. 7 Caroline #Garcia on Saturday?— Live Tennis (@livetennis) April 28, 2018
More > https://t.co/9FeIwv5gQS pic.twitter.com/qdCaSmrC0U
The two-and-a-quarter-hour struggle featured nine aces from Svitolina and 10 from Garcia, who earned her first win of the season over a top 10 player. Saturday's second semi-final will be contested between Estonia's Anett Kontaveit and fifth-seeded Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic. Kontaveit needed almost three hours to beat Russia's Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 7-5, 6-7 (6/8), 6-4 while Pliskova came from break points down in the final game to beat Roland Garros champion Jelena Ostapenko, 5-7, 7-5, 6-4.
Garcia on her budding rivalry with Svitolina: “It’s always a pleasure to play against her because there are rallies, no one lets down, and we’re always trying to come back. So it was very important for me.” #PTGP2018— WTA Insider (@WTA_insider) April 27, 2018
Down goes #1!@CoCoVandey defeats Simona Halep 6-4, 6-1 at @PorscheTennis to continue her amazing run on clay. She faces the winner of Svitolina/Garcia in the SFs! https://t.co/gCCWlXe7IZ— US Open Tennis (@usopen) April 27, 2018
?: #USOpen 2017 pic.twitter.com/pHZYE8QrIn