Indian Wells: Naomi Osaka knocks out Simona Halep in semis

California: World number one Simona Halep suffered a major blow as she bowed out of the Indian Wells Masters after going down in straight sets to unseeded Naomi Osaka in the semi-finals of the women’s singles event here on Saturday.

Osaka, who was playing her third career match against a reigning world number one and second against the Romanian, registered a comfortable 6-3, 6-0 victory over Halep in a one-sided last-four clash that lasted a little over an hour.

Osaka bounced back from 3-3 in the first set and went in to win the last nine games of the match to earn her first win over Halep in four career meetings.

The last-four clash also saw the Japanese tennis star smashing 16 winners, breaking serve five times besides winning 67 percent of the points behind her first serve.

In finals, Osaka will now square off with No.20 seed Daria Kasatkina, who stunned American tennis star and former world number one Venus Williams 4-6, 6-4, 7-5 in a clash that lasted under three hours.(ANI)