For the first time since 2016, Madison Keys will play in a red-clay final after the fourth-seeded American defeated Liudmila Samsonova in Friday's first semifinal at the Internationaux de Strasbourg, 6-1, 6-3. 

Keys has now reached four clay-court finals in her career, but two of them came on green clay at the Credit One Charleston Open in her home country. Keys' only previous clay-court final in Europe came when she was an unseeded 21-year-old at the Internazionali BNL d'Italia in Rome, when she defeated two Top 10 opponents before losing to Serena Williams.

But Keys came into Friday's match, which was twice paused due to rain, with a favorable head-to-head record against Samsonova, and that trend continued in 67 minutes in Strasbourg. After losing their first meeting on grass in Berlin three years ago, the American has now won four straight -- and she's now 2-0 against Samsonova this spring after defeating her 6-2, 6-3 in Madrid. 

2017 US Open finalist Keys will bid for her eighth career title, and first since Eastbourne last summer, against her fellow American Danielle Collins, who's bidding for her third title in the last two months.

Third-seeded Collins defeated Ukrainian Anhelina Kalinina, 7-6(3), 6-2 -- who was playing her second match of the day -- to improve to 22-2 in her last 24 matches. Collins hit 31 winners to 17 unforced errors in 1 hour and 39 minutes on court, and bounced back in a tight first set despite losing four straight games from 3-0 up. 

Kalinina had previously defeated No.1 seed Marketa Vondrousova, 5-7, 6-3 6-2, in the quarterfinals on Friday morning, after their match was postponed from Thursday. 

"I was excited to come here after Rome and playing some great tennis on clay ... having some great matches under my belt this clay-court season and playing some tough opponents," Collins said afterwards. 

"It was a tough battle. I definitely felt for her today, having to play two matches in one day ... and I thought she did really well, moving well, hitting her shots well. I felt for her in the end, because I think the fatigue started to kick in a little bit. It's sad when that happens, because she had such a great tournament."

Keys, 29, has won four of her last five finals on the Hologic WTA Tour. She and Collins have not played since 2020.

Collins defeats Kalinina in Strasbourg semifinals