The Nurnburger Gasteinladies 2013 tournament being played on clay in Germany, this week lost most of its seeds in the early rounds. Top seeded Mona Barthel, 3rd seed Irina-Camelia Begu and 6th seed Chanelle Scheepers all lost in the second round; numbers 4, 5 and 7, Andrea Petkovic, Kiki Bertens and Maria-Theresa Torro-Flor in the first round; and number 2, Annika Beck, in the quarters. The only seed still standing in the semis was Italy’s Karin Knapp, seeded 8 and ranked at 69. She had an easy first round, a tough second round three setter and then dispensed with Beck for the loss of only one game.
Knapp faced off against Austria’s 86th ranked Yvonne Meusburger in the first semi. Meusburger got to the semis by way of a double bagel in the first round, took out Begu in straights in the second round and then had an easy first set and a breaker in the second in her quarter final match. The Austrian has always done well at this tournament and Saturday afternoon was no exception. She took the first set 6-3 and the second set 6-4 with some good tactics and solid play, to take her place in the final.
The second semi saw Andrea Hlavackova of the Czech Republic, ranked at 108, take on 84th ranked Elina Svitolina of Ukraine. Hlavackova had two straight sets wins and a three setter on her route to the semis, while her opponent lost just seven games in the first and third rounds and a three setter against Scheepers in the second round. The 18 year old Ukrainian had a good run in this tournament, but the more experienced Hlavackova managed to battle past her in three sets. Hlavackova took the first 7-5, Svitolina held on for the second in a breaker which she won 7-1 and the Czech finally took the decider 6-4 in a battle that lasted two and a half hours.