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Wawrinka stuns Murray to reach U.S. Open semis
Flushing Meadows, NY (Sports Network) - Ninth-seeded Swiss slugger Stan Wawrinka ousted reigning champion Andy Murray in Thursday's quarterfinal, while world No. 1 Novak Djokovic moved into the semifinals at the U.S. Open.
Wawrinka toppled the third-seeded British star 6-4, 6-3, 6-2 inside a breezy, sun-spanked Ashe Stadium.
The 28-year-old Wawrinka simply dominated Murray on Day 11, utilizing a big service game, winning 88 percent of his first-serve points en route to his first-ever Grand Slam semifinal.
The match came to a close when Wawrinka converted on his first match point when Murray netted a final forehand return.
Wawrinka was elated to reach his first career Grand Slam final four.
"It's amazing for sure, especially here," he said. "To beat him (Murray) in three sets is just amazing."
Wawrinka pulled off the straight-set upset in 2 hours, 15 minutes, as he broke Murray four times, while the Brit was unable to break his Swiss counterpart and did not enjoy even one break-point chance in the surprising setback.
Murray suffered his first straight-set loss at a major since losing to Rafael Nadal in the 2011 French Open semis.
"I thought he played great," Murray said of Wawrinka.
Murray seemed to struggle with some windy conditions on Thursday.
"It's a shame I had to play that kind of match today," he said.
The 26-year-old Dunblane, Scotland, native is now 8-6 lifetime against Wawrinka, including 2-2 at Grand Slam events. The two have now met three times at the U.S. Open, where Murray prevailed in 2008 before Wawrinka avenged that defeat in the third round in 2010.
"When you work hard at something for a lot of years, it's going to take time to fire yourself up and get to training 110 percent," Murray said about his preparation for this year's Open. "That's something kind of natural after what happened at Wimbledon."
The late-blooming Wawrinka titled in Portugal this year and is a three-time runner-up on tour in 2013, including his first-ever ATP Masters 1000 final in Madrid.
His semifinal opponent on Saturday on the hardcourts at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center will be the six-time Grand Slam champion Djokovic, who earned a 6-3, 6-2, 3-6, 6-0 triumph over 21st-seeded Russian Mikhail Youzhny.
The 26-year-old Djokovic has reached at least the quarterfinals in New York every year since 2007 and at least the semis at every major event since Wimbledon in 2010.
Djokovic was last year's Open runner-up to Murray, lost to Murray in July's Wimbledon final, and beat Murray in January's Australian Open finale.
The 2012 champion Murray was also a U.S. Open runner-up to the great Roger Federer here in 2008.
There hasn't been a repeat men's U.S. Open champion since Federer in 2008.
Saturday's other semifinal will pit the second-seeded former world No. 1 Nadal against eighth-seeded Frenchman Richard Gasquet.
The 12-time Grand Slam champion Nadal, who's a brilliant 20-0 on hardcourts this season, was this year's French Open champion, captured the 2010 U.S. Open championship, and was a runner-up in New York two years ago.
The 2013 men's U.S. Open champ will collect at least $2.6 million. Nadal could earn an extra $1 million as a result of winning the U.S. Open Series leading up to the final Grand Slam event of the year.
09/05 23:10:06 ET
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