2020 Australian Open champion Sofia Kenin and Anna-Lena Friedsam will play the title clash at the Lyon Open on Sunday. In the first semi-final, Friedsam upset the seventh seed, Daria Kasatkina 6-3, 3-6, 6-2 in two hours and five minutes.
This is the German’s second career final at a WTA event and the first since she reached the Linz Open final in 2015 (lost to Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova). Entering into the match, Kasatkina held the advantage over her opponent having won both their two past meetings.
However, Friedsam turned the match around convincingly. After her win, the 26-year-old said, “It feels great. It makes me feel that all the hard work has paid off. I’m super proud”. Then, crediting Kasatkina, Friedsam added, “She’s a great player and very solid.
She doesn’t make any bad decisions. I tried to play to my strengths. I tried to use my power, push her out of court and get to the net. I think it worked today, but it was a hard fight and a hard battle”. Friedsam’s meeting with Kenin will be the first encounter for both players.
In her semi-final against fifth seed Alison Van Uytvanck, Kenin needed three tie-breaks to claim the win. After two hours and 27 minutes of play, the American won 7-6(5), 6-7(2), 7-6(2) to reach her first final since Melbourne Park.
Talking about the match, Kenin shared, afterwards, “It was a really tough match. She [Van Uytvanck] played tremendously. Every point was a battle. Just a few points, a few shots went my way. I know her game pretty well, so I knew what I needed to do.
She's improved a lot, and I've improved. I expected her to come out and play some big tennis and serve big. It was easy to adapt because I know her game well, but the score-line wasn't easy”. Photo Credit: WTA Twitter