Zverev, Osaka win, gain semis

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    NEW YORK. — German fifth seed Alexander Zverev survived a stern test of nerve to reach his second Grand Slam semifinal this year with a 1-6, 7-6(5), 7-6(1), 6-3 victory over Croatian Borna Coric at the US Open on Tuesday.

    After a slow start, Zverev raised his game and showed more poise in the crucial moments against the 27th seed to become the first German to reach the last four at the US Open since Boris Becker in 1995.

    “I just started playing maybe a little bit more aggressive because if I would’ve played the way I played (at the start), it’s not the level for a quarterfinal match at a Grand Slam,” said Zverev.

    Meanwhile, Naomi Osaka’s sharp serving and superior return game helped her past American Shelby Rogers 6-3, 6-4 and into the semifinals as the Japanese continued her quest for a second title at Flushing Meadows.

    Osaka, who was 0-3 lifetime against Rogers coming into the match, broke at love to take a 5-3 lead in the first set where Rogers hit 16 unforced errors to Osaka’s five and held serve to claim the set.

    The fourth seeded Osaka broke again early in the second set for a 2-1 lead and sealed the win when Rogers dumped a forehand into the net on match point for her 28th unforced error.

    American upstart Jennifer Brady continued her surprising surge with a 6-3, 6-2 victory over Kazakhstan’s Yulia Putintseva to reach her first Grand Slam semifinal.

    The 28th-seeded Brady, who has yet to drop a set at this year’s US Open, used her massive forehand and impressive court coverage to deny Putintseva in her bid to become the first Kazakh woman to reach the final four of any major.

    Coric made a flying start to his first career Grand Slam quarterfinal match and needed only 24 minutes to wrap up the first set during which he took advantage of 12 unforced errors from a flat Zverev.