NEW YORK, NY, USA - No.2 seeds Kristina Mladenovic and Timea Babos have set up a rematch against No.13 seeds CoCo Vandeweghe and Ashleigh Barty in the final of the US Open in women’s doubles.
It’ll be the fourth time the two teams will meet in 2018; Vandeweghe and Barty claimed the first victory en route to their triumph at the Miami Open, while Mladenovic and Babos got their revenge in the next two matchups at Madrid and Birmingham.
“It’s really great to see that at the end of the doubles draw, there are four really great singles players involved,” Mladenovic acknowledged in her post-match press. “We know the quality that Vandeweghe and Barty have, we played them a few times this year. They are very tough opponents - if they’ve made the final it’s for a reason, but we’re there too.
“It’s going to be an exciting one, both teams have big weapons so hopefully me and Timea’s experience and fighting spirit will put us on top of it.”
Mladenovic and Babos had to fight through an inspired challenge from unseeded duo Zhang Shuai and Sam Stosur, and needed an hour and 35 minutes to seal the 6-4, 7-6(4) victory to reach their spot in the final.
Meanwhile, Vandeweghe and Barty had to face the top seeds Barbora Krejcikova and Katerina Siniakova, battling through in a similarly tight contest to win 6-4, 7-6(6) after an hour and 49 minutes.
“Today was a high-quality match all around,” Vandeweghe said, adding: “I was happy to get it done and… not completely get the court all soaked with my sweat - it was humid out there!”
“I think we won a few big points, especially in the tiebreaker, which certainly helped. But we weren’t far off on many of their service games. I felt like we were in most, if not all of them. And we were looking after our service games pretty well,” Barty said.
Mladenovic and Babos are through to their second Grand Slam final together as a team in 2018 after lifting the trophy at the Australian Open - and their third as a team overall after a 2014 run to the Wimbledon final.
Meanwhile, it’s Barty and Vandeweghe’s first major final together, although both have been at this stage before: Vandeweghe reached a pair of mixed doubles finals in 2016, while Barty reached all four Grand Slam finals with retired partner Casey Dellacqua but is still seeking her first major title.
“It’s always great to be playing on a final Sunday, particularly at a Slam,” Barty said. “We’ve played well all week so this is a nice reward, but we have one more step to go.
“Hopefully it’s fifth time lucky for me. We’ll see!”
“I’ve heard the horror stories,” Vandeweghe added with a laugh.