MUMBAI, India - Luksika Kumkhum and Irina Khromacheva fought through a pair of tricky semifinal clashes to reach the final at the L&T Mumbai Open, a WTA 125K event.
No.5 Kumkhum, of Thailand, backed up her quarterfinal upset of top seed Zheng Saisai with another strong victory over the resurgent Margarita Gasparyan in two sets to advance.
Kumkhum started the opening set with a 4-0 double break lead, and held onto the advantage in the rollercoaster four consecutive breaks that followed. In the second set, she had to recover from a break down to eke out the win, triumphing 6-2, 6-4 in an hour and 11 minutes.
For World No.103 Kumkhum, who made the third round of this year's Australian Open for her career-best Grand Slam performance, it’s also the first WTA final of her career.
Across the net will be World No.165 Irina Khromacheva, who knocked out No.2 seed Dalila Jakupovic - her good friend and doubles partner - 6-4, 7-5 to defeat the highest-ranked player left in the field.
Khromacheva had to recover from a break down in both sets. She turned around a 0-2 deficit in the first and reeled off four games in a row to grab a double break advantage and avoid the upset. In the second, she once again recovered from 0-2 down and won four games in a row to finish the set.
It’s the second WTA final of the season of the season for Khromacheva (both at 125K level) after triumphing at Kunming Open in Anning earlier this year.
And after playing against each other in the singles semifinal, Jakupovic and Khromacheva teamed up as the top seeds in the doubles event.