No.2 seed Aryna Sabalenka clinched a spot in her first Internazionali BNL d'Italia final with a 7-5, 6-2 victory over No.13 seed Danielle Collins just before midnight on Thursday.

With her 1-hour and 23-minute semifinal triumph, Sabalenka is now 6-0 against Collins. Sabalenka, a two-time champion at the Mutua Madrid Open, is one win away from a title at the other WTA 1000 clay-court tournament. 

"I'm super happy to be in my first final in Rome," Sabalenka said afterward. "I think I played really great tennis today. I'm super happy with the win, especially in two sets, against Danielle."

1 vs. 2 again: To get her first Rome title, Sabalenka will have to prevail in a rematch against World No.1 Iga Swiatek, who defeated No.3 Coco Gauff in the day's first semifinal.

Sabalenka held three championship points against Swiatek in the Madrid final two weeks ago, but Swiatek pulled off the victory in an instant classic showdown to capture her first Madrid trophy. Swiatek holds a 7-3 lead in their overall head-to-head.

This will be the fifth time Sabalenka and Swiatek meet in a final, all of those coming on clay. Along with her win in the Madrid final last fortnight, Swiatek beat Sabalenka in the Stuttgart finals in 2022 and 2023. Sabalenka did get a win over Swiatek in the 2023 Madrid final.

"I think the level is there, the tennis is there, that I got everything to get this win," Sabalenka said. "I just have to focus on myself, I guess, and not rush things, wait for the right shot to finish the point."

Fast facts: Sabalenka will be eyeing her 15th Hologic WTA Tour singles title and her sixth WTA 1000 title on Saturday. A victory would result in her first WTA 1000 title of the year.

This is the first time the Rome final will boast a meeting between the top two players in the world since the creation of the WTA Rankings in 1975.

This is also the first time the World No.1 and No.2 players will meet in consecutive WTA 1000 finals since 2013, when top-ranked Serena Williams defeated second-ranked Maria Sharapova in the Miami and Madrid finals.

Despite the loss, Collins is still having an exceptional season, winning back-to-back titles at WTA 1000 Miami and WTA 500 Charleston last month. Collins is 19-2 in her last 21 matches -- but both of those losses have come against Sabalenka, in the Madrid Round of 16 and tonight in Rome.

Match moments: Sabalenka sprinkled some deft drop shot winners into her power game en route to a 4-1 lead on Thursday. However, Collins blasted a couple searing returns to earn break point two games later, and after a Sabalenka double fault, the set was back on serve at 4-3.

Neither player faced another break point until 6-5, where a netted Collins forehand gave Sabalenka double set point. A deep forehand winner by Collins saved one, but another of the American’s forehands found the net on the second.

Sabalenka never faced a break point in the second set as she eased to victory. Sabalenka had 21 winners in the match to Collins’ 15, and the No.2 seed went 4-for-7 on break points.