Until Kerber stopped her, Williams had won four matches in a row for the first time since past year in the desert.
The 31-year-old German then eased through the remainder of the set, serving out the match to love and progressing to her third Indian Wells semi-final.
Williams never got her big serve going, producing just one ace.
Kecmanovic was the first lucky loser to reach the quarter-finals at the tournament since it became a Masters 1000 event in 1990. But, you know, I'm not putting pressure on myself even now. "Hopefully I can take advantage of that energy and momentum". In each match, Williams was relentless, playing sharp and focused - her lethal, telegenic forehand a highlight of the tournament.
Raonic will face No. 7 seed Dominic Thiem in a semifinal on Saturday after No. 18 seed Gael Monfils of France withdrew from his quarterfinal against the Austrian, leading to a walkover on Thursday night.
Kerber won the last four games of the opening set and the last three games of the second to subdue Bencic, who was coming off her first WTA title in four years in Dubai.
"It's always tough to play against Belinda". "Slows down the pace and plays higher, then suddenly accelerates or plays angles". Despite starting out down in the first set of the PNB Paribas semifinals, Kerber dug deep to power through the win, 6-4, 6-2. But it wasn't enough. She has a lot of confidence, especially from the last weeks.
The youngest player ever to win one of the WTA's prestigious Premier Mandatory tournaments
The 18-year-old beat Svitolina 6-3, 2-6, 6-4 in the semi-finals of the Women's Tennis Association Premier Mandatory event at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden. Kerber said she struggled to impose her game on the American. "I think still good that I fought, that it went to the third set".
"I just tried to play consistent, be aggressive when I had the first chance".
"I definitely feel like I'm moving much, much better on the court than I have ever moved".
"Congratulations to Bianca for an unbelievable tournament", Kerber said. Andreescu will see both her ranking and wallet benefit from the win as she will become the No. 24 player in the world upon new WTA Tour rankings being released Monday. "It will be a battle".
"I'm trying not to think who is on the other side of the court".
Canadian wildcard Bianca Andreescu claimed another shock win as she defeated world number six Elina Svitolina to advance to the final of the BNP Paribas Open. And then I started off well in the second set and ended up winning that match in three sets [against Irina-Camelia Begu]. The next couple of games I did the same thing. I think that's what's happening with me right now.
"That's what I've been doing throughout many years and now this moment has become a reality so it's really, really insane". "This is the mentality I have, and this is the mentality I'm going to keep having". "She is one who is really trying to take the match into her hands".
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