Number one seed and world number 4 Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland, will meet Belgium’s Yanina Wickmayer, seeded 3 and ranked at 24, in Saturday’s final of the ASB Classic being played in Auckland, New Zealand, this week.
Radwanska had an easy route to the final, with pretty pedestrian straight set victories over Greta Arn of Hungary in the first round, Simona Halep of Roumania in the second round and Elena Vesnina in the quarters.
On Friday she faced off against the unseeded American Jamie Hampton and had a hard day at the office after such easy wins in the earlier rounds. This match went to the wire in both sets, with Radwanska winning both tie breakers 7-4 and 7-3 respectively.
Wickmayer had a bit of a scare in the first round, being taken to a tiebreaker in the first set against Madalena Rybarikova of Slovakia, ranked at 62 and unseeded in this tournament, but managed to come through the match in straight sets. She had an easier time in the second round, when she took out Romina Oprandi of Switzerland, ranked at 61 in straights; and then had another straight sets win over her countrywoman Kirsten Flipkens in the quarters.
Her semi final match was against the hard hitting German 8th seed Mona Barthel, who is ranked at 39. This was a seesaw match in which Wickmayer won the first set 6-4, but Barthel came back at her to take the second 6-1, forcing a decider which went all the way to a tie breaker, which Wickmayer won 7-3 to book her place in the final. Wickmayer and Radwanska are tied 1-1 in the head to head stats.