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Top-ranked defending champion Naomi Osaka was ousted from the US Open on Monday by Belinda Bencic while Croatian Donna Vekic erased a match point to join the Swiss 13th seed in a quarterfinal matchup.

Bencic’s 7-5, 6-4 triumph, her WTA-best sixth over a top-five foe this year, ensured 21-year-old Japanese star Osaka will fall from atop the rankings next week and won’t become the first repeat US Open winner since Serena Williams in 2014.

“The challenge cannot be bigger against Naomi,” Bencic said. “I had to be at the top of my game and I’m really pleased how well I handled my nerves at the end.”

Back in the QF! ??@BelindaBencic defeats World No. 1 Osaka 7-5, 6-4 to reach the QF stage in Flushing Meadows for the first time since 2014…#USOpen pic.twitter.com/U77E34blRi— US Open Tennis (@usopen) September 2, 2019 Bencic, 22, matched her deepest career Grand Slam run from the 2014 US Open with her third victory of the year over Osaka, having also won at Indian Wells and Madrid.

By Ian Dei

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