Azarenka, Sabalenka set up an all-Belarusian final in Ostrava


The J&T Banka Ostrava Open final will be the first ever encounter of two Belarusian WTA players, as Victoria Azarenka and Aryna Sabalenka won their Saturday’s semifinal matches in straight sets.

The fourth-seeded Azarenka booked milestone 40th final appearance of her career with a confident 6-1 6-4 win over Maria Sakkari of Greece. The 31-year-old opened the match by winning five games in a row and kept her rhythm throughout, saving seven of the eight break points she faced en route to a victory in one hour and 37 minutes.

This is a continuation of Azarenka’s spectacular resurgence — the former world No.1 boasts a 18-3 win-loss record since the tour’s resumption, which includes the Western & Southern Open title and the US Open runner-up finish.

In the second Ostrava Open semifinal on Saturday, the third-seeded Sabalenka beat American Jennifer Brady 6-4 6-4, converting all the three break points she earned and saving five of the six break points she faced.

Azarenka and Sabalenka have faced each other twice so far, both times at the US Open. Sabalenka was victorious in their 2019 meeting, while Azarenka triumphed in their this year’s encounter.


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