Osaka, Japan:Sania Mirza on Friday advanced to the Japan Open semifinals after her second-seeded French opponent Marion Bartoli retired midway through the quarterfinal due to a shoulder injury with the Indian leading 6-4, 2-0.
With Bartoli hampered by a right shoulder injury, Sania controlled the proceedings in the hour-long match, although the Indian said she did not play all that well.
"You always like to win match point, so it was unfortunate but I felt I was playing well and was in control. At the end of the day, a win is a win. The big thing for me is that I was outplaying a top 15 player, who was in good form," Sania said.
Sania will next play fourth seed Francesca Schiavone, who didn't even need to take the court as her seventh seeded rival Melinda Czink withdrew due to a right foot injury. Sania faced eight break points in the first set itself but managed to save seven of them.
"I'm pleased that after two weeks of not playing my best, I'm finishing on a high and have made the semifinals. I'm playing a good friend next," Sania said.
Sania and Schiavone have played twice before, with the Italian losing the first set in both meetings but coming back to win both in three setters.