PARIS (AP) — Mirra Andreeva, an unseeded 17-year-old from Russia, surprised No. 2 seed Aryna Sabalenka 6-7 (5), 6-4, 6-4 at the French Open on Wednesday to become the youngest Grand Slam semifinalist since Martina Hingis at age 16 in 1997.

“I tried to play brave,” Andreeva said. “And I managed to win.”

She is also the youngest player to eliminate someone ranked No. 1 or 2 at Roland Garros since Monica Seles — like Hingis, now a member of the International Tennis Hall of Fame — was 16 when she beat Steffi Graf in the 1990 final.

Andreeva is ranked 38th but has yet to win a tour-level title of any sort and is competing in only her fifth Slam tournament.

Sabalenka, meanwhile, is a two-time champion at the Australian Open, including in January, and had won the first 23 Grand Slam sets she played in 2024 until dropping two in a row against Andreeva. Sabalenka was visited multiple times by a trainer and doctor on Wednesday and often clutched at her midsection, although it was not clear what was wrong.

In Thursday’s semifinals, Andreeva will face another newcomer to this stage: 12th-seeded Jasmine Paolini, a 28-year-old from Italy, who reached her first major semifinal by beating No. 4 seed Elena Rybakina 6-2, 4-6, 6-4 earlier.

“It’s an unbelievable feeling,” Paolini said.


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