Djokovic, Isner storm into semifinals; Pennetta shines

Djokovic, Isner storm into semifinals; Pennetta shines

Serbia's Novak Djokovic and American John Isner cruised into the last four of the BNP Paribas Open here on Friday with straight-sets wins in the quarterfinals.

Djokovic hardly raised a sweat in the Californian desert as he eased to a 6-1, 6-3 victory over Frenchman Julien Benneteau, before the towering Isner rode his booming serve to a 7-6 (7-4), 7-6 (7-3) win over Latvia's Ernests Gulbis.Djokovic was not at his absolute best but was never in any real danger against the 32-year-old Benneteau, who beat him here eight years ago when the Serb was still a teenager.

Djokovic, 26, raced through the opening set in less than half an hour with two service breaks and four aces despite the windy conditions and an approaching sand storm.The first six games of the second set all went with serve before Djokovic reeled off the last three in a row to seal a comfortable victory in less than 70 minutes. He broke Benneteau for a 4-3 lead when the Frenchman double faulted, then again to wrap up the win when his opponent hit a forehand long and wide.

Li stunnedItalian veteran Flavia Pennetta upset China's Australian Open champion Li Na on Friday to join Poland's Agnieszka Radwanska in the women's final.

The 32-year-old Pennetta qualified for the biggest singles final of her career after a 7-6 (7-5), 6-3 drubbing of an out-of-sorts Li.

Pennetta will face Radwanska in Sunday's final after the Pole avenged her loss to Romania's Simona Halep in Qatar last month with a 6-3, 6-4 win.

Radwanska, ranked third in the world, sealed the first set with an ace after she broke Halep's opening service game but found herself trailing the second when the Romanian broke. But the Pole regained control, getting back on level terms then getting a second break and serving out victory.

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