WTA Stuttgart: Vandeweghe will meet Pliskova for the title


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WTA Stuttgart: Vandeweghe will meet Pliskova for the title

Coco Vandeweghe will meet Carolina Pliskova for the title in Stuttgart. She completed her third Top 10 win of the week by dispatching No.6 seed Caroline Garcia of France, 6-4, 6-2 and became the first player from USA through to the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix final since Davenport in 2005.

Garcia had notched her first Top 5 win of the season yesterday over Svitolina but in her first clay court semifinal since 2017 Strasbourg she struggled to counter her opponent's groundstrokes. The American had 12 winners to 11 unforced errors, and never faced a break point in the match though she needed to insist in the press-conference to believe it.

Garcia, bidding to become the second successive Frenchwoman to reach the Stuttgart final, after Kristina Mladenovic last season and the first to hoist the trophy here in Stuttgart since Sandrine Testud in 1998, completed the match with just seven winners to 13 errors.

Although the red clay has never been her surface of choice, American Coco Vandeweghe has found her comfort zone on the dirt this week in Stuttgart. Having gone 4-3 during the clay swing in 2017, the American is off to a strong start (3-0) in 2018.

With her result this week, she has reached her first tour-level final on clay in singles or doubles. She is now projected to overtake fellow American Madison Keys as the No.3 ranked American and move to No.13 in the rankings (as a finalist or with the title).

Vandeweghe will meet Karolina Pliskova who became the first Czech player to ever reach the final in Stuttgart, as the No.5 seed eased past Estonia's Anett Kontaveit, 6-4, 6-2. In the first meeting between the two players, Pliskova had 22 winners, including six aces, to only nine unforced errors, and she never faced a break point throughout the encounter as she slid into her first final appearance of 2018.

Anett Kontaveit has spent a total of 6 hours and 45 minutes on court thus far this week in Stuttgart before the semifinal, the most of any other semifinalist, as she beat last year’s finalist Kristina Mladenovic in 3 hours and 9 minutes – the second longest WTA Tour match of 2018.

Vandeweghe leads the head-to-head by three wins to two. "We played last year here a very close match," said Pliskova. "With her it’s always a close match. We always play some tiebreaks, close sets. So, I think it’s going to be few points [that make a difference]" she said according to the WTA site.

"I have to be ready for good serves, for a lot of winners," Pliskova elaborated. "I think she was playing very well today what I saw, a couple of games against Caro [Garcia]. And she is a very confident player. So, I just have to make everything possible to just stay on my serve, to hold my serve."