World No.11 Karolina Pliskova is now about to crack the Top 10, but she could also collect her first WTA Premier-level title if she manages to get past last year’s finalist Angelique Kerber in Sunday’s title match at the Bank of the West Classic in Stanford.
Upset-maker Varvara Lepchenko, who had ousted top seed Caroline Wozniacki from the tournament, was Pliskova’s victim in the semifinals. It was not a straightforward win, as Pliskova gave away a 4-2 lead in the second set and found herself trailing 4-5, before recovering with three straight game wins for a 6-2 7-5 triumph. As for Kerber, Elina Svitolina barely gave her resistance in their semifinal encounter, 6-3 6-1.
Kerber leads Pliskova 3-2 in their head-to-head stats, and the German was the one who won their last match, a marathon in the final of Premier-level Birmingham during this year’s grasscourt stretch.
Additional info: As promised, Women’s Tennis Blog’s photographer Jimmie48 is already at the Rogers Cup. Check out his first photo gallery from Saturday, featuring Victoria Azarenka, Monica Puig, Ajla Tomljanovic,Magdalena Rybarikova, Donna Vekic, and others.