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Errani & Vinci Into Palermo Final

It was a special day for both of them - Sara Errani got her 40th match win of the year, Roberta Vinci reached the final in her hometown for the first time - but now they have to play each other.

Published July 13, 2013 12:01

Errani & Vinci Into Palermo Final
Sara Errani

PALERMO, Italy - The XXVI Italiacom Open has its dream final, after its Top 2 seeds - and Italy's Top 2 players, too - fought off in-form semifinal opponents at the International-level event on Saturday.

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Roberta Vinci, the No.2 seed, was the first to advance, dropping a long 51-minute first set and then rallying from an early break down in the third set to get past Estrella Cabeza Candela, 57 62 62.

"She was playing really good tennis in the first set, and I was a little bit tired and nervous too," Vinci said. "Players like her are tough for me, because they're always playing high balls and playing so consistently. But I played more aggressively in the second set and from there it was much better.

"I'm so happy to reach the final - I live here and practice here, so I'm very happy about it."

The second semifinal followed, pitting No.1 seed Sara Errani against No.4 seed Klara Zakopalova - while Vinci is best friends with Errani, was she hoping to play her friend and fellow Italian or not?

"I would prefer to play against Sara of course, because that would mean one of us will win - but if I'm choosing which style of play I prefer to play against, it would be Zakopalova," Vinci explained.

And with Vinci sitting in the stands, Errani was the one who came through, fighting off three points for a 4-1 second set deficit to edge the hard-hitting Zakopalova in a competitive two-setter, 64 64.

"I wasn't feeling very good about my game, and Zakopalova is a very strong player, so I just tried to stay in the points and fight for every point," Errani said. "The second set was really tough - I was 3-1 down, and 30-0 for her - but I just tried to move her and play deep, and I'm happy for the win."

It was Errani's 40th WTA main draw match win of the year, making her just the second player to cross that milestone in 2013 (Serena Williams is at 46). "I'm very proud to get to 40, but I'm very tired of course," Errani said. "Serena's the best player in the world. I don't know if I'll catch her!"

One thing swinging in Errani's favor going into the final is the pair's head-to-head - Errani leads their series, 5-2, and has won their last five meetings in a row, not even dropping a set in any of them.

"It's for sure going to be very difficult to play against my best friend," Errani said. "But we're really happy we're both in the final tomorrow. It's the best possible result for us and it's very special."

Will Vinci keep allowing Errani to stay at her house now? "Maybe not tonight!" Errani added.

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