BOL, Croatia - In a pair of contrasting semifinals, the top two seeds advanced to championship Sunday at the WTA 125K Croatia Bol Open.
Top seed and defending champion Tamara Zidansek of Slovenia was pushed to the brink by teenaged compatriot Kaja Juvan, before No.2 seed Sara Sorribes Tormo rolled past No.4 seed Anna Karolina Schmiedlova to set up the final.
Zidansek rallied from 4-0 and 5-3 deficits in the final set, but never needed to save match point, to beat the reigning Youth Olympic gold medalist, 2-6, 7-5, 7-5 in just over two hours.
Juvan was looking for her third upset of a seeded player this week, having beaten No.3 seed and former champion Aleksandra Krunic in the quarterfinals, and No.5 seed Astra Sharma, en route.
"Our country is small, and it is a great thing when at a tournament, two strong contenders are participating," Zidansek said.
"I knew this was going to be the toughest match so far. At 5-3 in the third set, I just I had to do my best."
In the second semifinal, the Spaniard won the last nine games of the match to earn a 6-4, 6-0 victory.
In the doubles final, No.2 seeds Timea Bacsinszky and Mandy Minella rallied from a first set bagel to defeat No.1 seeds Cornelia Lister of Sweden and Czech Renata Voracova, 0-6, 7-6(3), 10-4.
The top seeds served for the match in the second set, at 6-0, 6-5, but never reached match point.
"I am very happy, as today’s match was very difficult," the Swiss said. "The beginning wasn’t so good, but in the end, we gave everything we could."
Bacsinszky celebrated her 30th birthday on Saturday with a win alongside Minella, after being upended in the quarterfinals by Zidansek on Friday.
It is the first WTA 125 doubles title for the Swiss, and the third for Minella, who improved to a perfect 3-0 in doubles finals at WTA 125K events.
“I will come back to Croatia Bol Open as long as it's organized," Minella, also the 2016 singles champion in Bol, said. "The people are great, the organization is great and we’ll see each other again."