Sydney - Two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova will play in the final of
the Sydney International after ending Tsvetana Pironkova's incredible
run at the tournament on Thursday.
The Czech second seed proved too strong for the plucky Bulgarian defending champion, winning their semi-final 7-5, 6-1.
Kvitova ended Pironkova's quest for a 15th straight win at the Sydney
tournament after the Bulgarian came through the qualifying rounds to
win the tournament in 2014 and again had to qualify for the main draw
After a stiff contest in the opening set the world No 4 finished off Pironkova with the loss of just one game in the second set.
Kvitova set up an all-Czech final with Karolina Pliskova, who was a
straight sets winner in the other semi-final over German fifth seed
After a slow start that included losing her opening service game,
Kvitova went to a new level and looks in good shape for next week's
Australian Open in Melbourne.
Meanwhile, a sapping schedule finally caught up with Kerber.
World No.22 Pliskova enjoyed a comfortable 6-3, 6-2 win over last year's finalist.
It had been a tough few days for the German fifth seed and world No 9
who had to endure three three-set matches, including a WTA record late
local time finish at 03:10 on Wednesday after rain delays disrupted the
Kerber had little more to offer and was dispatched in just 55 minutes by Pliskova.
"I been playing the whole week really well," Pliskova said.
"I won some good matches. Last week as well in Brisbane I had few
good matches, so I'm feeling well and happy to play good before
"I was surprised that it was 6-3, 6-2. I played her a few times and it was always a close match.
"But I started to play really fast, pushing her and dictating the
game a little bit and my serve was working today as well, so maybe
that's the difference between us."