WTA

Sakkari to meet streaking Kontaveit in St Petersburg final

By Sports Desk February 12, 2022

Maria Sakkari will face Anett Kontaveit in what seems set to be an enthralling top-10 clash in the final of the St Petersburg Ladies Trophy.

Sakkari, the top seed in the tournament, had to go the distance against Irina-Camelia Begu, with the world number seven eventually prevailing 6-4 6-7 (4-7) 6-4.

That victory took Sakkari three hours and four minutes, as she had to fight back from a break down in the deciding set.

However, she is now into a fourth singles final of her career and has gone one better than her previous best run at St Petersburg, which came in 2020 when she reached the semi-finals.

"It was a very tough match. I think Begu played really, really well," Sakkari said.

"The level of the match was super high. I had to come up with some very tough shots and very physical tennis, but I'm very glad I did it, and I'm super excited to be in the final here."

Second seed Kontaveit awaits in Sunday's final, and the Estonian world number nine should be much fresher after only needing an hour and 11 minutes to see off Jelena Ostapenko 6-3 6-4.

Kontaveit has remarkably now won 19 matches in a row indoors in the longest such sequence since Justine Henin celebrated 22 consecutive victories between 2007 and 2010.

"It was a very competitive match. I really had to bring very good energy to come through on top today," Kontaveit said.

"She's a very aggressive player, so I had to be really ready for her big shots and just be as consistent and take my chances when I could. I felt like I did that really well today."

Sakkari and Kontaveit have met 12 times previously, with each player winning six times.

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