Sasnovich, Barty through to Sydney International semifinals

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Ash Barty, right, of Australia and Elise Mertens of Belgium embrace after Barty defeated Mertens in their women's singles match at the Sydney International tennis tournament in Sydney, Thursday, Jan. 10. (AP Photo/Rick Rycroft)

Sydney (AP) — Aliaksandra Sasnovich’s impressive start to the season continued on Thursday with a straight-sets win over Timea Bacsinszky to advance to the Sydney International semifinals.

The No. 33-ranked Sasnovich, who made it to the quarterfinals last week in Brisbane, was in control most of the way to beat the Swiss 6-3, 6-3.

Sasnovich will face two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova or 2016 Australian Open champion Angelique Kerber for a spot in the final. Kvitova and Kerber played later Thursday.

Ashleigh Barty, who beat top-seeded Simon Halep on Wednesday, advanced to the semifinals with a 6-3, 6-3 victory over Elise Mertens, breaking the Belgian player’s serve six times.

“I thought it was a little bit of a slow start, but it was good to get the ball rolling mid to late in that first set,” Barty said.

Barty will meet Yulia Putintseva or Kiki Bertens in the semifinals.

In men’s quarterfinals Thursday, eighth-seeded Andreas Seppi upset top-seeded Stefanos Tsitsipas 4-6, 6-4, 6-4 and No. 3 Diego Schwartzman beat Yoshihito Nishioka 6-1, 3-6, 7-6 (1).