Jankovic & Kvitova: Semifinal Clash In Linz
Published October 14, 2011 12:00
LINZ, Austria - Petra Kvitova and Jelena Jankovic set up a blockbuster semifinal clash at the Generali Ladies Linz on Friday evening, both winning their quarterfinal matches at the $220,000 tournament in straight sets.
Kvitova, the No.1 seed, was the first of the two to advance, firing five aces and taking just 58 minutes to dispatch No.8 seed and former Generali Ladies Linz champion Daniela Hantuchova comfortably in straight sets, 62 62.
"Me and Daniela know each other very well and are good friends. It was tough to play a friend but when you're on the court you just want to win," Kvitova said. "Whoever went for the winner first had the advantage. I played very well."
Jankovic, the No.3 seed, followed with a 62 64 win over lucky loser Evgeniya Rodina, losing three games to go from 62 31 to 62 34 but regrouping well to close it out. Rodina had beaten No.6 seed Julia Goerges earlier in the week.
Kvitova and Jankovic will be playing each other for the first time. For Jankovic it would be somewhat of a breakthrough to win - she has lost seven of her last eight matches against Top 5 players (the lone win coming against Samantha Stosur at Dubai in February, and even then she needed a third set tie-break).
The other semifinal features No.7 seed Dominika Cibulkova and Lucie Safarova, the only unseeded player left. In the first match of the day Safarova overcame eight double faults and beat qualifier Sorana Cirstea, 75 62; Cibulkova followed with a 67(5) 62 61 win over lucky loser Anastasia Rodionova, missing a 3-1 tie-break lead but easily taking the next two sets.
"It was very similar to the match I played against Errani in the last round," said Cibulkova, who won that one, 67(1) 63 61. "In the first set I was too passive, then relaxed for the second set and started to really hit the ball and play well."
"Lucie is a very tough opponent," Cibulkova said. "The last time we played was in the first round of Wimbledon last year. She's lefty and is very talented."
No.4 seeds Marina Erakovic and Elena Vesnina became the first team into the doubles final with a 62 64 win over Liga Dekmeijere and Petra Martic on Court 1. Read about Erakovic and Vesnina's team chemistry here.