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Two Americans—a rising star and a punchy veteran—take on the new world No. 1 and a sneaky dangerous Czech. Will we see an All-American final?

(2) Aryna Sabalenka vs. (17) Madison Keys

Aryna Sabalenka will be the new No. 1 player in the world when this tournament is over, we know that much. What we don’t know is how that fact will play in her head.

It might steel her nerves and inspire her to play her best so that the ranking is validated. Or it could weigh her down and cause her to tense up in the wrong moments.

The good news for Sabalenka is that she already won her first major earlier this year in Melbourne, so she has a few months of expectations behind her. She will probably be inclined to raise her game, not break under the pressure.

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Madison Keys finds herself back in position to reach a second US Open final since her championship loss to Sloane Stephens in 2017.

Keys is striking the ball as clean as ever and playing with a renewed spirit that appears to be a combination of age and love—her coach is also her fiancé.

These are moments that players in the back half of a career cherish. Keys has been a steady top twenty player most of her career, but these opportunities have been scarce for her. She has carried the precious memory of being so very close to a Slam title for six long years. She’ll be ready.

Keys has the power off the baseline to both hang with Sabalenka and give her trouble.

This will be a tight three-set affair. The difference maker will be Keys’s homecourt advantage. Sabalenka will struggle with the crowd, Keys will thrive on it.

Winner: Madison Keys

(6) Coco Gauff vs. (10) Karolina Muchova

At 19-years-old, Coco Gauff has the world at her fingertips. If youth is a concern, look no further than Carlos Alcaraz, who won this title a year ago at age 19. Youth is the name of the game in today’s tennis landscape.

Gauff brings a 16-1 record into this match since her first round loss at Wimbledon. She held strong through three sets in Round 4 against a resurrected Caroline Wozniacki, then plastered No. 20 Ostapenko 0 and 2 in the quarters.

Her doubles run with Jess Pegula ended in the quarters, and that plays in her favor. She can focus on singles and rest her body.

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Gauff will face No. 10 seed Karolina Muchova from the Czech Republic.

Muchova has had a smooth path to the semifinals, only dropping one set in what looks like a dominant streak of matches. However, she has only faced one seeded player, No. 30 Sorana Cirstea in the quarterfinals.

She plays a steady game, always within herself. Most of her groundstrokes have plenty of margin, and her style of play is somewhat autopiloty. Not too many ebbs and flows. Just consistent quality and whatever results come out of it.

Against Coco she’ll be battling youth, exuberance, a highly partisan American crowd and maybe her own past.

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The first X-factor in this match is Brad Gilbert. He has Coco Gauff’s head in the right place to maximize her natural talent.

The other one is rooted in an interesting factoid: Gauff (2022) and Muchova (2023) both lost to Iga Swiatek in the previous two French Open finals. Muchova’s recent appearance in a Slam final plays in her favor. That distaste for losing is still fresh, as are the lessons she learned on that stage. Her determination to reach a second Grand Slam final this year will be enough to carry her through…barely.

Winner: Karolina Muchova