Caroline Garcia wins through to Cincy final against Petra Kvitova
Caroline Garcia overcame an awkward rain break to close out a semi-final win over Aryna Sabalenka in Cincinnati.
Garcia recorded her third top ten win of the week in putting away Sabalenka 6-2, 4-6, 6-1.
The rain delay appeared to benefit Sabalenka who was down a set when the weather played its part.
Sabalenka rallied to take the second set, but Garcia would not be denied and she surged ahead in the third set and ran away with the win.
Having come through the qualifying tournament, Garcia has had a long week but she has since beaten No 4 Maria Sakkari, No 7 Sabalenka, and No 8 Jessica Pegula.
“I guess no one expected it, that’s for sure,” Garcia said. “It’s a long way to come from qualies.”
Garcia has changed her game since taking on a new coach in Bertrand Perret.
The former World No 4 had to endure frequent breaks but eventually recovered the form she played with early on.
“First, to be in the final of a 1000 event after so many years, and the scenario of today was just unbelievable,” Garcia said.
“We had to stop a few times. We never know when we will come back. It was long wait, and in the wait you never know what you are supposed to do, so it was tough.
“I’m very happy with the last preparation for the comeback at 3-1. I was really ready for every point. It made the difference.”
Garcia will face Petra Kvitova in the final after the two-time Wimbledon champion put an end to the hopes of a home winner by defeating Madison Keys.
Kvitova reached her 40th WTA Tour final with her 6-7(6), 6-4, 6-3 comeback win over Keys.
The 32-year-old Czech had to fight back from a set down but cut a determined figure as she powered her way through.
Kvitova took two hours and 18 minutes to outlast American hope Keys.
The two former Top ten players put on a terrific battle of the big serves.
Kvitova gave credit to Keys for a tough test after the match.
“It was an incredible battle,” Kvitova said in her post-match press conference.
“I have to say Madison played a really great match. It was a really, really tight one.
“This is very special, to be honest.
“I was going to the match today, and I was telling myself that I have never been in the final here. … I had many, many finals but never here.
“So finally it’s here. Actually, who knows how it will end tomorrow, but this is already a big step for me.”
The Cincinnati Masters women’s singles final is scheduled to get underway at 19:00 BST weather permitting.
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