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Naomi Osaka could meet Aryna Sabalenka, Ash Barty face Karolina Pliskova in US Open semis

FILE - Naomi Osaka of Japan in action during the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Photo: Piroschka Van De Wouw/Reuters

FILE - Naomi Osaka of Japan in action during the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Photo: Piroschka Van De Wouw/Reuters

Published Aug 26, 2021

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NEW YORK – Defending champion Naomi Osaka could meet second seed Aryna Sabalenka in a US Open semi-final while top-ranked Ashleigh Barty might have a Wimbledon final rematch with Karolina Pliskova under a women's draw revealed Thursday.

Osaka, the reigning US and Australian Open champion, was seeded third and could play Germany's Angelique Kerber in the fourth round before a possible quarter-final against Ukraine sixth seed Elina Svitolina.

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The Japanese star, who pulled out of the French Open and skipped Wimbledon citing mental health issues, might then meet Belarus' Sabalenka, a semi-finalist last month at Wimbledon, or Czech eighth seed Barbora Krejcikova, this year's French Open winner.

The opposite half of the draw features top seed Barty, coming off a second Grand Slam title at Wimbledon in July, facing a possible quarter-final against Polish seventh seed Iga Swiatek.

If Barty reached the final four, she could see Czech fourth seed Pliskova in a rematch of the Wimbledon final or Canadian sixth seed Bianca Andreescu, the 2019 US Open champion who skipped last year's New York hardcourt showdown.

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