LEXINGTON, KY, USA - Jil Teichmann is into her third career WTA final after powering past American wildcard Shelby Rogers at the inaugural Top Seed Open presented by Bluegrass Orthopaedics in Lexington.
World No.63 Teichmann recovered from an early break to record a commanding 6-3, 6-2 victory over Rogers, booking her spot into her first WTA final on hardcourts - and she's done it without dropping a set.
“Everyone thinks I’m just a clay court player,” Teichmann smiled in her post-match press conference. “I think I’ve proven that it’s not only this way.
“I’ve been feeling great on hardcourts since the beginning of the year, and I was starting to have results… so I was on the right way. But all this coronavirus pandemic made it stop, and same for everyone.
“My goal was just to get back into this level and show it again.”
Teichmann had burst onto the scene last year, winning her maiden WTA titles in n Prague and Palermo. But with the tour’s return to play she chose to travel to Lexington, Kentucky in hopes of earning more ranking points.
The decision paid off, and Teichmann now awaits the winner between Jennifer Brady and Coco Gauff as she seeks to lift her third WTA trophy.
Her opponent Rogers had authored one of the biggest upsets of the tournament in the quarterfinals, coming back from a set down to defeat top seed Serena Williams. Against Teichmann, Rogers started out on a high, breaking in the first game to take a 1-0 lead.
But Teichmann sent her crashing back down to earth a game later, breaking straight back and attacking the American’s vulnerable serves to reel off the next four games in a row to make it 4-1. Teichmann refused to allow Rogers to get any rhythm, making her play out longer rallies and earning the unforced errors as she took the first set 6-3.
“I have much respect for Shelby, and she won a great match yesterday against Serena,” Teichmann said. “I also practiced with her a few days ago, so I knew she was in good shape. So I went into the match really focused and I’m really feeling confident as well.
“So I actually just focused on my side, to do my game. I guess she was a bit tired after yesterday’s match - but who isn’t, after such a long break?”
Teichmann has yet to drop a set in the tournament, and she kept that streak alive against Rogers, even as the American fought her way to break Teichmann and get them back on serve at 1-1. Teichmann quickly reestablished her lead, taking the next to games to pull ahead 3-1.
Teichmann was tested again as Rogers’ solid returns earned her three break points, but she stayed solid to complete the victory in just 72 minutes, 6-3, 6-2.
“For me it’s great to be so consistent from the baseline, and then moving forward to the net is where I’ve been feeling the best,” Teichmann assessed. “My serve today was a little bit off, but even in the most difficult moments, like when I had three break points against in the second set, my serve came again. So I feel very good on my serve today.”