Serena Williams Loses a Set but Surges to a Win in the US Open

Williams will have her fitness and the rest of her game tested further in the quarterfinals on Tuesday, where she will face another big-hitter: eighth-seeded Karolina Pliskova, who was the last player to beat Williams at the Open, winning their 2016 semifinal in straight sets.

“That will be, I think, a match I want to repeat on Arthur Ashe,” said Pliskova, who advanced to the quarterfinals for a third consecutive year with a 6-4, 6-4 victory over 18th-seeded Ashleigh Barty.

Anastasija Sevastova, No. 19 seed, reached the quarterfinals for a third straight year, beating the seventh-seeded Elina Svitolina, 6-3, 1-6, 6-0.

Svitolina’s exit left just two of the top 10 women in the tournament: No. 8 Pliskova and No. 3 Sloane Stephens, the defending champion, who defeated 15th-seeded Elise Mertens, 6-3, 6-3, on Sunday night.

Normally stoic, Stephens has been showing more emotion than before as she works to defend her title, embracing the energy of the crowd and giving it back to them with effusiveness.

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