New Zealand's Joelle King will compete in the semi-finals of a PSA World Series tournament for the first time in over three years after she downed England's Alison Waters 3-1 to secure a last four berth at the 2017 U.S. Open presented by Presented by Macquarie Investment Management.
The 29-year-old, who missed over a year of competitive action after suffering from an achilles injury in 2015, last made it to a semi-final at the 2014 Windy City Open but continued to display a re-discovered confidence on court as she followed up her second round win over 2016 champion Camille Serme with a polished performance against Waters.
The win, which came after 43-minutes of action, sees her through to meet Egyptian Raneem El Welily - the player who beat her in that semi-final in Chicago - for a place in the tournament decider.
“Camille is a good player and she won this tournament last year so I know that if you beat her then you are playing well,” said King.
“But you kind of have to leave that behind and focus on the next match and Alison was always going to be tough. We were both ranked four and five in the world for a while so had a lot of battles in the past.
“I felt a bit tight in the second and kind of lost my way and just fell away from the game I like to play. I just tried to come back and played my style and it worked and I'm looking forward to the semis.”
El Welily meanwhile came through in four games over compatriot Nouran Gohar, bouncing back from dropping the first game to prevail 11-13, 11-7, 12-10, 11-5 and keep alive her hopes of winning a first World Series title since the 2017 Windy City Open in March.
“We’re teammates and we also play for the same club, so we know each other’s game quite well," said El Welily after the match. "But everyone goes on court with a different attitude and a different personality.
“You come on with a plan but that could change any second and it keeps changing throughout the entire match so you have to adapt and you have to find a way to win.”
Results - Quarter-finals (Bottom Half): Women's 2017 U.S. Open
 Joelle King (NZL) bt  Alison Waters (ENG) 3-1: 11-9, 8-11, 11-2, 11-3 (43m)
 Raneem El Welily (EGY) bt  Nouran Gohar (EGY) 3-1: 11-13, 11-7, 12-10, 11-5 (46m)
Draw - Semi-finals
 Nour El Tayeb (EGY) v  Laura Massaro (ENG)
 Joelle King (NZL) v  Raneem El Welily (EGY)
photos Janos Schmidt