Mattek-Sands to play Pliskova in Malaysia Open final

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After top seed Caroline Wozniacki’s surprise loss to the Chinese qualifier Qiang Wang, in the first round of the BMW Malaysia Open, the top half of the draw opened up giving a great chance of progressing further into the tournament for the other players in that section. Czech Karolina Pliskova, ranked at 127, took all her chances and dispensed with the 5th seed Misaki Doi of Japan, on her way to the semis. There she met another Japanese player, Ayumi Morita, the 4th seed, and made light work of her semi, beating the Japanese with the loss of just two games – both in the second set.

In the bottom half of the draw, wild card and 197 ranked Bethanie Mattek-Sands of the US had a three set battle in her first round match, but went through her next two games in straights to make it to the semis where she took on Anastasia Pavlyuchenkvo, the Russian 3rd seed and 29th ranked wild card, who had a similar run to the semis, with a tough three setter in the first round and then two relatively easy matches. Mattek-Sands got the break she needed in the 9th game to enable her to serve out the first set 6-4. After a rain suspension the American ran through the second set 6-1 for game, set and match in under an hour and a quarter to make it to her first final since 2011.


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