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Naomi Broady's run in the ASB Classic in Auckland came to an end as she lost in straight sets to American Sloane Stephens.
The British number three had followed up a win over former world number one Ana Ivanovic with a battling second-round victory over Jelena Ostapenko.
But the 4-6 7-6 (7/4) 7-5 win over the world number 84 did not come without controversy as Broady called for the Latvian to be disqualified after throwing away her racquet in the second set tie-break, appearing to hit a ball boy.
Broady went on to win that match but her quarter-final meeting with American fifth seed Stephens featured no such on-court incidents.
In a tight first set Broady twice had chances to win it, having recovered from 0-40 to lead 6-5 before Stephens held serve to take the set into a tie-break.
Broady had another set point in the decider but the American eventually won it 8-6 to take the set.
Broady broke Stephens' serve to lead 2-1 in the second set but from there the American won four straight games to lead 5-2.
The Briton held serve in game eight and there were three chances for her to break in the next but Stephens finally won the game and the match with a cross-court backhand winner to triumph 7-6 (8/6) 6-3.
After the match Stephens paid tribute to her opponent as she said: "It was a tough one. Naomi's a great player.
"She has had such a great week here."
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