Garbine Muguruza continued her comeback to form with a 7-5, 6-3 win over Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova as she entered a maiden women’s singles semi-finals of the ongoing Australian Open 2020 on Wednesday.

The unseeded Spaniard struggled for form during the latter half of 2019, reaching her first Grand Slam semi-final since French Open 2018. She will now face in-form Simona Halep for a place in the final who steamrolled Anett Kontaveit in the other quarter-final of the day.

“Sometimes you don’t feel great but you’ve got to fight and stay there,” Muguruza said after the match. “The first set was very hard, I think it lasted about an hour, but it was a very important set and I’m glad I got it. I’m excited to play my first semi-final here. I’ve known her (Halep) for quite a long time so it’s going to be a tough match.”

Halep continued her hunt for a third Grand Slam title with a 6-1, 6-1 thrashing of Estonian Anett Kontaveit.

She is the only quarter-finalist to have not dropped a set at the ongoing event this year. “I felt great today on court. I was feeling my game, I felt strong on my legs,” Halp said. “I know how to play against her (Kontaveit) so I was just focused on every point I played.”

Halep finished as the runners-up to Caroline Wozniacki at the Melbourne Park in 2018 but says she now packs more experience and that defeat was the stepping stone for her title wins at the French Open that year and Wimbledon in 2019.  “That match wasn’t negative at all. I couldn’t finish (win) the match, maybe I was nervous. But now I have more experience. That match helped me win the two Grand Slams that I have already, and maybe it will help me get the third one,” she said.