Kerber beats Kirilenko, faces Pavlyuchenkova in Monterrey final

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The final of the Alberto Monterrey Open which is being played in Mexico this week pits the tournament’s top seed, Angelique Kerber against 5th seed Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova. Kerber beat the qualifier, Samantha Crawford in straights in the first round and another qualifier, Alla Kudryavtseva, in a tough three setter in the second round, before an easy straight sets win over Ayumi Morita in the quarters. In their first ever meeting, Kerber battled past 3rd seed Maria Kirilenko in another three setter in the semis, taking the match 6-4 2-6 6-2 in two hours and five minutes.

5th seed Pavlyuchenkova had three pretty easy straight sets wins against unseeded players in her run to the semis where she met Monica Niculescu, also unseeded. Niculesco got the win against Kimiko Date-Krumm in the first round when she had to retire, beat 6th seed Yanina Wickmayeri in three sets in the second and last year’s champion Timea Babos in straights the quarters to get to the semis. The Romanian started well and took the first set 6-3, but the Russian got her game together in the second set to take it 6-2 and, even though Niculescu fought hard, managed to take the decider 6-4 to book her place in the final after two hours and nine minutes on court.

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