World No. 3 Karolina Pliskova reached the semifinals of the BNP Paribas Open after edging Garbiñe Muguruza 7-6(2), 7-6(5) in a two-hour battle on Wednesday.
The pair contested their seventh meeting immediately after a blockbuster fourth-round battle between Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal on Stadium 1.
Pliskova clinched the first set in 50 minutes, and broke the Spaniard in the fifth and seventh games, seemingly on track to return to the semifinal stage in the Coachella Valley for the second straight year.
Muguruza saves two MPs in dramatic fashion and draws even with Pliskova at 5-5 in the second. Drama unfolding on Stadium 1! #BNPPO17— BNP Paribas Open (@BNPPARIBASOPEN) March 16, 2017
But Muguruza, the reigning Roland Garros champion, would not go down without a fight. As Pliskova served leading 5-2 in the second set, Muguruza broke at love, and a game later saved two match points before pushing Pliskova to a tiebreak.
Pliskova, 25, improves to a 19-2 record on the season, a run which includes titles from Brisbane (d. Cornet) and Doha (d. Wozniacki). She will next face No. 8 Svetlana Kuznetsova, a two-time BNP Paribas Open finalist. They split their two career meetings, both contested last year (Cincinnati, Singapore).