Pliskova eyes title after Serena shock


Karolina Pliskova revelled in the "dream" of reaching the US Open final, but feels she still has one step to go after upsetting Serena Williams.

The Czech 10th seed stunned Williams 6-2 7-6 (7-5) in the semi-finals on Thursday, ending the American's 186-week reign as world number one.

Pliskova, 24, had never previously been beyond the third round of a major, but her focus is on the title ahead of a clash with Angelique Kerber.

"It was always a dream to get a title, get to the semi-final, get to the final. It's a big result for me," she said.

"I hope I don't stop yet, there is still one more step to go. I'll do anything to get the title.

"Even if I don't get it, it's a big result. I'm really happy to be there and even have the chance to play in the final here.

"It doesn't happen often, that you're playing especially a semi-final against Serena on centre court here in New York. It doesn't happen often that you're in the final of grand slams.

"I'm really excited to be there and really excited to be in a grand slam final for first time in my life."

Pliskova has been in fine form, claiming the title in Cincinnati heading into the year's last major, with her victory over Williams extending her winning run to 11 matches.

She said her recent performances had given her all the belief she needed at Flushing Meadows.

"It was about those last two, three weeks that I have played here in the States and I won good matches. It gave me a lot of confidence, and that's what tennis is all about," Pliskova said.

"If you believe in yourself you can beat anyone, especially in girls' tennis it's not only about a game and tennis, but it's more about the mental things sometimes.

"So I really believe now that I can beat good players, and all of the players, actually, now.

"But for me, I think the most important step was to get through to the fourth round. Then I knew if I have the chance to play someone who is better than me, I know I can be dangerous."

Kerber was beaten by Pliskova when they last met, in the Cincinnati final as the German was then denied the top ranking.