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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Davenport, Agassi Advance to Semifinals

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MELBOURNE, Australia — Defending champions Andre Agassi and Lindsay Davenport strolled into the Australian Open semifinals with effortless wins Tuesday.

Agassi played almost flawless tennis to rout fellow American Todd Martin 7-5, 6-3, 6-4 to set up a semifinal meeting with Pat Rafter, who beat Slovakian Dominik Hrbaty 6-2, 6-7, 7-5, 6-0 to reach the semifinals for the first time in nine attempts.

Davenport crushed Russian eighth-seed Anna Kournikova 6-4, 6-2. She will play Jennifer Capriati in a repeat of last year’s semifinal after she beat fourth seed Monica Seles 5-7, 6-4, 6-3.

Sixth seed Agassi left tour veteran Martin floundering against his fearsome return of serve and precision groundstrokes to advance to his 20th Grand Slam semifinal.

"I felt like I was executing everything I could do about as well as possible," said Agassi, who beat Yevgeny Kafelnikov in last year’s final to win his second Australian Open title.

It was his 13th win in 18 matches against Martin, who upset third seed and former world No. 1 Pete Sampras in the previous round.

After comfortably winning the first set in his quarterfinal match, Rafter suddenly found himself in trouble against Hrbaty, who had beaten world No. 2 Marat Safin in the fourth round.

The 14th-seeded Hrbaty won the second set in a tiebreaker and led 4-1 in the third as he managed to pin Rafter to the baseline and keep him from playing his normal serve-and-volley game.

But the Australian regrouped and quickly turned the match around, winning 12 out of the next 13 games as Hrbaty fell to pieces.

Rafter took the final set to love in just 22 minutes to become the first Australian since Mark Woodforde in 1996 to reach the semifinals.

Davenport was just too powerful and experienced for Kournikova, who was once again found wanting on the big occasion.

Davenport won a staggering 93 percent of points on her first serve, while Kournikova undermined her own chances with 26 unforced errors.

The 19-year-old has never won a tournament in her career and has only made it past the fourth round of a Grand Slam twice.

"I know I’m a good player," Kournikova said.

"I just have to be more consistent. Why change something if everything is going so good?"

Capriati reached her second successive Australian Open semifinal when she scrambled back to beat Seles.

The American 12th seed scored her first win over Seles in six Grand Slam matches, wearing down the four-time Australian Open winner with her tenacity and power.

"I think it’s one of the best matches I’ve played," a delighted Capriati said afterward. "My adrenaline is pumping so hard right now I feel like I could run a marathon."