Dokic, Vinci To Meet For Den Bosch Title
Published June 17, 2011 04:12
'S-HERTOGENBOSCH, Netherlands - Having pocketed her first title in nine years at Kuala Lumpur in February, Jelena Dokic is one match away from winning another after cruising through her semifinal at the Unicef Open on Friday. Her opponent in Saturday's final will be Roberta Vinci, who pulled off a mild upset over Dominika Cibulkova in the other semi.
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Former world No.4 Dokic was first to advance over Italian qualifier Romina Oprandi, who was forced to retire due to a left wrist injury when the Dokic was leading 64 20.
"There were a lot of good players in the draw, and a lot has happened this week," said 59th-ranked Dokic, alluding to both the sometimes wet weather and injuries suffered not just by Oprandi but also Kim Clijsters. "I'm feeling good on the grass and I'm excited to play the final tomorrow.
"I think I'm a much better player than I was before... more experienced," the Australian added. "When you go through a lot you learn how to deal with situations. I hope I can keep it going."
Later, Vinci, the No.7 seed, stopped fifth-seeded Dominika Cibulkova, 75 61. Earlier, Cibulkova had completed a quarterfinal defeat of No.2 seed Svetlana Kuznetsova, after rain forced the suspension of play on Thursday evening with the score at 75 46 30 in the Slovak's favor. While Cibulkova needed to play just five more games to seal her win, 75 46 62, she seemed to run out of steam against crafty Vinci, managing just 48% of first serves in the second set, and serving five double faults.
"Dominika is a great player, for sure, but I played a good game today," said Vinci. "I was very focused. I tried to be aggressive and play a lot of slice on her backhand. She made it difficult for me to come to the net but I tried to mix things up with drops shots as well as slice, and I think that was the key to this match. I think I'll have to play a similar game tomorrow."
Dokic and Vinci, who are both 28, will be meeting for the first time. Dokic is gunning for a seventh WTA singles title, while Vinci is seeking her fifth. Dokic was victorious on grass at Birmingham in 2002, but all of Vinci's successes have come on clay and hardcourts.
The doubles final will also be completed on Saturday after rain forced the players off court at a delicate moment. Fourth-seeded Barbora Zahlavova Strycova and Klara Zakopalova are tied with unseeded Cibulkova and Flavia Pennetta, 16 64 3-3.