Hercog Awaits In Final
Published February 26, 2010 12:00
ACAPULCO, México - There was a blip on the radar but it was nowhere near as big as it was the day before, as Venus Williams moved into the final of the Abierto Mexicano TELCEL presentado por HSBC Friday night.
In the quarterfinals on Thursday, Williams had to claw her way out of a 5-1 third set deficit to beat Spain's Laura Pous Tio; squaring off against Romania's Edina Gallovits on Friday she again went to three sets, but the decider was nowhere near as complicated with the world No.5 smoothly completing it, 64 26 62.
"Edina played well. She didn't make many errors until a lot later in the third set," Williams said. "I don't feel any pressure to repeat here - but I want to. I'll just have to go out there tomorrow and play better than today, better than all the other matches I've played, and more importantly, better than my opponent."
Williams owns a 42-25 career record in Sony Ericsson WTA Tour finals. More specifically she is 8-5 in clay court finals. She has never lost at this tournament either - in her only previous appearance last year, she won the title.
By contrast, Williams' opponent in the final - Polona Hercog, ranked No.60 in the world and the No.8 seed here - had never even been beyond the quarterfinals of a Tour event before this week. She reached the final with a surprise 63 75 win over No.5 seed Carla Suárez Navarro, rallying from 3-5 in the second set.
"With every match I was playing better and I felt very comfortable in the warm-up today, so I was very confident when I went on the court," Hercog said. "Carla is a great player, but I was more aggressive than she was and it worked out for me. I'm happy to be in my first final, and clay is my favorite surface."
Williams and Hercog will be playing each other for the first time.
"I've never seen Polona play, I've only seen her name," Williams said. "As you've seen this week though, everybody's playing well. Especially against me they seem to bring their best. Whether she has experience or not, she's going to play her best game, and I'll have to be ready for it tomorrow."