By Erik Gudris | Saturday, August 2, 2014
Svetlana Kuznetsova didn't waste any time winning a late night semifinal in D.C. Her reward - a spot in the Citi Open final.
Photo Credit: AP
Despite waiting around all day, Svetlana Kuznetsova didn't waste any time securing her place in the Citi Open final at Washington D.C.
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Both No. 2 seed Ekaterina Makarova and No. 6 seed Kuznetsova had to wait until the late evening to start their all-Russian semi. Yet despite looking like a potential three set battle, Kuznetsova took control early in the opening set.
Kuznetsova, who didn't face a break point, closed out the set 6-3.
The second set featured both women trading early breaks. Once again, Kuznetsova earned the lead as she proved stronger in the baseline rallies. The two-time Grand Slam champion got an insurance break for 5-2 and then served for the match.
Despite resistance from Makarova, who saved three match points, Kuznetsova didn't waver. She would go on to win the match 6-3, 6-2 in just under 90 minutes.
Due to the late nature of the match, Kuznetsova took questions from media during her cool down on a stationary bicycle in the player's gym. At first, taken aback by the number of people who wanted to speak with her, Kuznetsova joked, "No questions."
But then the always personable Russian talked about her evening.
"For me it was very difficult match. The level of games was extremely high," Kuznetsova said about the match. "In the key moments I was moving well and doing the right things."
D.C. is now the second final of the season for Kuznetsova who also reached the final in Oeiras. She's happy with her good results over the last few months.
"I was starting to play on the clay so good and I was happy on the clay and now first tournament on hard and I'm making final so I'm happy about it," Kuznetsova said.
While she wants to win the title, Kuznetsova relishes just being in another final after several years of struggle.
"Well, you really miss this feeling," she said. "I had been struggling a couple of years with injuries and with my game. It's looking much better. I'm feeling much better, moving much better and I'm really enjoying it."
In an earlier semifinal, Japan's Kurumi Nara
overcame a dismal start to also reach her second final this season.
New Zealand's Marina Erakovic
raced out to a 6-0 first set over her opponent. Nara shook that off and fought back in both second and third sets as she completed the 0-6, 6-4, 6-4 victory.
Nara now finds herself in a second final this year having won Rio De Janeiro earlier in February.