Pliskova books Brisbane semi-final spot

Laine Clark
Karolina Pliskova battled past Alison Riske to reach the semi-finals of the Brisbane International

First there was relief, now Karolina Pliskova's thoughts have turned to revenge after winning through to the Brisbane International semi-finals on Friday night.

The world No.2 had some anxious moments against American Alison Riske before digging deep to emerge victorious 7-6 (8-6) 6-3 in a quarter-final clash lasting almost two hours at Pat Rafter Arena.

While happy to have overcome the plucky world.19 and keep her Brisbane title defence on track, Pliskova's focus quickly turned to Saturday's semi-final opponent - defending Australian Open champion Naomi Osaka.

While Pliskova is riding high at the season opening tournament after notching her 15th overall win at Brisbane, the Czech champion is still smarting from her last clash with world No.4 Osaka.

The Japanese young gun ousted Pliskova in three tight sets in the 2019 Australian Open semi-finals, levelling their head to head record at 2-2.

It also ensured Pliskova remained frustrated in her quest to win a grand slam, going closest when she made the 2016 US Open final.

Not that she had to be reminded on Thursday night after holding out Riske.

"It was 6-4 in the third which is a good match and it could have gone both ways," Pliskova said of last year's Australian Open semi-final against Osaka.

"But I remember another match I beat her (Osaka) in Tokyo in a (2018) final which is a positive.

"But it is always challenging playing her, she is playing great tennis."

Pliskova is on track for a third Brisbane title in four years after overcoming Riske.

American Riske fought back from 4-2 down in the first set to force a tiebreaker.

She hit back again from 4-1 down in the tiebreaker to hold two first set points before Pliskova triumphed.

Riske tried to threaten again in the second set but ultimately was brought undone by her 11 double faults.

It extended Pliskova's record against former Wimbledon quarter-finalist Riske to 7-1.

Pliskova said her dominant record against the American was deceiving.

"It's always close I don't know what it is about us, we always play good tennis together," she said.

"We have similar games. I was just happy to get that done in two sets."