British teenager Emma Raducanu has extended her stunning run at the US Open by beating Olympic champion Belinda Bencic.
Raducanu won 6-3 6-4 in the quarter-finals, making her the youngest British player to reach the semi-finals in New York in the Open era.
Raducanu, ranked 361st in the world when she burst on to the scene at Wimbledon earlier this summer, broke 11th seed Bencic in two sets.
After the match, the 18-year-old from Kent told Amazon Prime: "Playing Belinda, she is such a great opponent and is in great form. She hits the ball so hard, I had to adjust and adapt and it was a really tough match.
I am so happy to come through and thank you so much for all your support today.
“To have so many young players here doing so well shows how strong the next generation is – everyone is on their trajectory, so I am just here doing what I can control and it is my own journey.”
The ease of Raducanu’s progress through the draw has been remarkable - the teen prodigy has lost just 15 games so far and dropped no sets.
Raducanu began her qualifying campaign in New York two weeks ago, and on Monday, she thrashed American Shelby Rogers 6-2 6-1, reeling off an astonishing 11 games in a row.
24-year-old Bencic was a prodigious junior talent and made the last eight at the US Open for the first time aged 17, but her progress was derailed by injuries and she did not reach the same stage of a slam again for another five years.
On Wednesday, Raducanu made a tentative start, losing her opening service game and falling 2-0 behind, but she held her nerve and broke back in the sixth game to draw level at 3-3.
Bencic, the 11th seed, then found herself under increasing pressure as Raducanu closed in on the first set and the Brit held serve to take a one-set lead.
Raducanu spurned a chance for two break points in Bencic’s opening service game in the second set as the Swiss produced a brilliant backhand pass and then took the next two points to hold.
Bencic then fashioned two break points of her own in her bid to wrestle back the initiative, but Raducanu stubbornly refused to be broken.
Towards the end of the tense second set, Benic hit three quality winners to hold and trail 4-3.
Former professional tennis player Annabel Croft on whether Raducanu has the potential to win the Open
Raducanu was 30-0 down on her next service game but, with the aid of four straight errors from her opponent, moved 5-3 ahead and edged closer to the finish line.
Bencic produced an ace to hold serve and keep her hopes alive at 5-4, with one more chance to break Raducanu, who served for the match.
Raducanu double-faulted to trail 0-30 but won the next two points and delivered an ace to give her match point.
Bencic then hit a forehand into the net and Raducanu became the first qualifier to reach the US Open semi-finals, where she will face either fourth seed Karolina Pliskova or Greece’s Maria Sakkari.Raducanu shot to fame by reaching Wimbledon’s fourth round in July, in a stunning first grand slam showing. Her brilliant Wimbledon run was cut short after the teenager was forced to withdraw in the fourth round after suffering breathing difficulties.