Erakovic to face Safarova in Challenge Bell final in Quebec

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The two semi final matches in the International Level Challenge Bell tournament being played on carpet in Quebec City were played on Saturday. In the first match the unseeded and 84th ranked American, Christina McHale (Profile), took on 68th ranked and 6th seeded Marina Erakovic (Profile) of New Zealand. McHale lost just three games in her opener, followed by a tough three set win over 8th seed Caroline Garcia and then another three setter in the quarters. Erakovic battled through a three setter in the first round, won easily in straights in the second round and then came back from a set down in her quarter final match to make the semis. McHale broke Erakovic three times in the first set before the New Zealander went on a game winning spree, winning three games in a row to take the set 6-4. Her form continued into the second set where she built a 5-0 and two match points lead before the American got on the scoreboard by taking three games on the trot, but Erakovic made no mistake in sealing out the set at 6-3 to book her place in her 4th career final.

The second match was between 58th ranked and 3rd seeded Czech leftie, Lucie Safarova (Profile); and home favourite, the 5th seed Eugenie Bouchard (Profile), who is ranked at 53. Safarova, who was wild carded into the tournament, lost just five games in her first round, won two close tie breakers in the second round and then took out 7th seeded Lauren Davis for the loss of only six games in the quarters. Bouchard won a three setter in her opening round match and a tough two setter in the second round before taking out 2nd seed Kristina Mladenovic easily in straights in the quarters. The Canadian fans were treated to a 6-3 win by Bouchard in the first set, followed by 3-3 and advantage to get a second set break, but the Czech managed to hold on to that game and took the next two games to level at a set each. Safarova then won the first four games of the decider before the Canadian won a game. With the momentum on her side, Safarova closed out the set at 6-2 to move into her 12th WTA final.

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