LUXEMBOURG - Top seed Julia Goerges faced her toughest test of the week at the BGL BNP Paribas Luxembourg Open, coming back from the bring against qualifier Eugenie Bouchard to book her place in the final.
Down a set and two points away from defeat in the second set, Goerges completed a stunning turnaround to win 6-7(3), 7-5, 6-1 and return to the Luxembourg final for the first time since 2010.
Bouchard showed flashes of her vintage best against Goerges, and needed just one break to seal the hard-fought first set. The Canadian cut a formidable figure on the other side of the net, stepping inside the baseline and taking balls on the rise to cut down on Goerges’ attack time and keeping the German’s big serve under pressure.
After fighting off four of Goerges’ break opportunities, Bouchard broke through at 3-1 and battled ahead to extend her lead to 5-2. But she couldn’t keep up her impressive form, and Goerges broke back as Bouchard was serving for the set at 5-4, unforced errors creeping into the Canadian’s game.
The pair wrestled for the momentum in the tiebreak, Goerges looking keen to complete her comeback - but Bouchard slammed the door shut and reeled off four points in a row to close out the opening set.
Bouchard dialled up the pressure in the second set, starting off the second set with a break to lead 1-0. She kept the German under fierce pressure, bringing up break points in her next three service games as Goerges had to chase the scoreboard.
But Goerges fought her way back into the contest, breaking through at 3-3, with Bouchard coming back to reestablish her lead. But Bouchard must have felt a sense of deja vu as, while serving for the match and two points from victory, Goerges broke her once more.
The German’s game found another level as Bouchard seemed to deflate, and from 5-3 down she reeled off nine games in a row to power through the second set and open up the third with a double break lead, 4-0. There was not much Bouchard could do to stem the momentum, and Goerges calmly served out the set to love - sealing her spot in the final with an ace.
Seeking her fifth career WTA title - and her second of the season after her Auckland triumph - Goerges will take on the winner between Dayana Yastremska and Belinda Bencic in the championship match.
More to follow...