By Chris Oddo | Saturday, February 15, 2014
Angelique Kerber and Simona Halep will meet in the Qatar Total Open final in Doha, as each won their semifinals in straight sets on Saturday.
Photo Source: AFP
Simona Halep and Angelique Kerber each notched straight-sets victories at the Qatar Total Open in Doha to set up their first tour-level meeting in Sunday's final.
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In the first semifinal of the day, Kerber raced through the first set before encountering heavy resistance from a dialed-in Jelena Jankovic in the second. But the German, thanks to some incredible defense and plenty of grit, edged the Serb in a hard-fought second-set tiebreaker to close out the victory in one hour and forty-seven minutes.
“Jelena was playing unbelievably well in the second set,” said Kerber, “I was trying to fight until the last point.”
Kerber has yet to drop a set en route to her second final of 2014, and tenth overall.
In the day's second semifinal Halep needed to storm back from a 5-2 deficit against Agnieszka Radwanska in the first set, but once the Romanian took care of that piece of business, it was all one way traffic for the World No. 10.
Halep, who clocked 24 winners and converted on seven of 14 break points against Radwanska, has now won six of her last seven matches against top ten competition.
Halep contributed her ability to turn around a slow start to being more patient after the match.
“I started very aggressive, I wanted to hit all the balls,” said Halep. “Then I wanted to change something because I knew that it's not possible to win. I started to play smart/aggressive and hit more short crosses, and waited to finish the points.”
Halep, who won her first six career titles in 2013 and did not drop a single final, will contest her first final of 2014 on Sunday. She had dropped her first three matches to Radwanska, all in straight-sets, but has now taken the last two with the World No. 4.