Heavy Italian crowd favorites Sara Errani and Roberta Vinci secured berths in the semifinals at the $235,000 Italiacom Open tennis event.
The top-seeded and defending champion Errani subdued seventh-seeded Spaniard Silvia Soler-Espinosa 6-4, 4-0, while the second-seeded Vinci vaulted past fifth-seeded Spaniard Lourdes Dominguez Lino 6-1, 6-4 on the red clay at Country Time Club. Errani and Vinci are good friends and doubles partners on the WTA circuit.
The 2012 French Open runner-up Errani beat Czech Barbora Zahlavova Strycova in last year's Palermo final, also titled here in 2008, and was the 2009 runner- up at this tournament.
Errani's semifinal opponent on Saturday will be fourth-seeded Czech slugger Klara Zakopalova, while up next for Vinci will be another Spaniard, Estrella Cabeza Candela, who handled Czech Renata Voracova 7-5, 6-4 in Friday's quarterfinals.
Zakopalova snuck past German Dinah Pfizenmaier, 7-5, 6-7 (4-7), 6-1, to reach the final four.
The 2013 Palermo titlist will pocket $41,000.