Bouchard sets up Halep clash

Hampshire Chronicle: Eugenie Bouchard booked her place in the last four Eugenie Bouchard booked her place in the last four

Eugenie Bouchard and Simona Halep will go head to head on Thursday for the prize of a place in the Wimbledon final.

Both were impressive winners of their quarter-finals on Wednesday afternoon, as Bouchard brushed past Angelique Kerber 6-3 6-4 and Halep reeled off the final 11 games in a resounding 6-4 6-0 victory over last year's runner-up Sabine Lisicki.

The women's tour has been awaiting the arrival of a new generation to tackle the old guard and it looks to be here, with Bouchard and Halep at its head.

Bouchard overwhelmed Kerber, conqueror of Maria Sharapova in the fourth round, with a performance that showed why she looks destined to win grand slams sooner rather than later.

After last-four showings at the Australian and French Opens already this year, Bouchard has made it a hat-trick and Roland Garros runner-up Halep may have her hands full in preventing the 20-year-old Canadian reaching a maiden final.

It took Bouchard an hour and 12 minutes on Court One to come through and set up what she agreed was an attractive last-four showdown.

''I'm excited, she's a very good player, three in the world,'' Bouchard said. ''I'm excited to be in the semis (of a grand slam) again and I want to go one step further, that's for sure.''

Bouchard is set to secure a top-10 ranking for the first time next week, reward for her outstanding season.

Halep, meanwhile, has won seven titles in the last 13 months.

At this time last year, Halep had not been past the second round in a grand slam but the 22-year-old Romanian made the quarter-finals in Australia, pushed Maria Sharapova all the way in a terrific French Open final and is a real contender again.

Lisicki, beaten by Marion Bartoli in the 2013 final, always reserves her best form for Wimbledon but after a great start the match with Halep went away from her very quickly on Centre Court, and it was all over after only 57 minutes.

Halep said: ''I played my best tennis and I was enjoying every moment, it was incredible on Centre Court. I'm really happy I could win in two sets because tomorrow I want to be ready to have a good match again.''

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