Tuesday, 22 October, 2019

Kontaveit into Stuttgart final without playing single semi-final point

Victoria Azarenka Naomi Osaka Hits Back At Critics After Thrilling Comeback Win In Stuttgart
Shannon Reynolds | 30 April, 2019, 20:11

However, the latter withdrew from the tournament, giving the Estonian a bye into the final on Sunday, where she will meet either Petra Kvitova (Czech Republic), who defeated Kiki Bertens (Netherlands), 7-6 (3), 3-6, 6-1 in the other semi-final Saturday.

She won the match 6-3, 4-6, 7-6 (4), after fighting back from 1-5 in the final set.

World No. 1 Naomi Osaka joked that she had jinxed herself after pulling out of the WTA tournament in Stuttgart because of an abdominal injury on Saturday, but hopes to return to action in time for the French Open. "I said that I would need a bit more matches to get used to the clay", said Kvitova whose best run at Roland Garros was a semi-final spot in 2012. She beat No. 11 Anastasija Sevastova in the BNP Paribas Open and No 27.

The world number three quickly claimed a 6-0 lead as a tie-break was required, eventually securing victory after one hour and 31 minutes.

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Kontaveit said that Kvitova was a "role model" after the final, but Czech joked that she didn't feel like one. "So, it's going to be a really tough battle but I'm looking forward to it and hopefully I can play the same game as I played today". She is the first player to win two titles in this season.

"It was unbelievable to see the arena full every day", she said.

In Barcelona, two-time champion Kei Nishikori won a clay slugfest with Roberto Carballes Baena 6-4, 7-5 on Friday to move into the semifinals for a fourth time. But then, Osaka's winning experience from the Indian Wells, US Open, and the Australian Open came to play. She played extremely well on clay last year, winning 11 of her 12 matches, and has won all three of her red surface showdowns this year.

Victoria Azarenka got here returned from a fixed right down to oust Stuttgart defending champion Karolina Pliskova four-6, 6-3, 6-four and reach the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix quarterfinals.

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