Jankovic dumps out birthday girl Lisicki, Begu dethroned in Korea
Jelena Jankovic was in no mood to hand out any gifts on Sabine Lisicki's birthday as she denied the German a place in the Guangzhou International Women's Open semi-finals.
Lisicki was unable to celebrate turning 27 with a victory, losing 7-6 (7-4) 6-4 to defending champion Jankovic in the WTA International hard-court event on Thursday.
Second seed Jankovic has not dropped a set on her run to the last four and the former world number will face Ana Konjuh in the semi-finals as she eyes her first title of the year.
Lisicki served six double faults and could only manage a first-serve percentage of 57 as she squandered a 2-0 lead in the first set as well as a mini-break advantage in the tie-break, going on to lose in an hour and 46 minutes.
Third seed Konjuh ousted Jennifer Brady 6-4 7-5, while Lesia Tsurenko dumped out fifth seed Alison Riske to set up an encounter with Anett Kontaveit - who saw off Viktorija Golubic in a three-setter.
A new Korea Open champion will be crowned this weekend after Irina-Camelia Begu suffered a shock exit at the hands of world number 102 Jana Cepelova.
The unseeded Cepelova, ranked 79 places below Begu, triumphed 6-3 4-6 6-3 in the second round, while Sara Sorribes Tormo surprised fourth seed Kristina Mladenovic by winning 1-6 6-2 6-4.
Kirsten Flipkens, seeded six, also suffered an unexpected loss to Patricia Maria Tig, but Monica Niculescu got past Anna Karolina Schmiedlova in straight sets.