WTA Tour

Ivanovic faces Venus in final

2014-01-03 09:30
Ana Ivanovic (AFP)

Auckland - Former world number one Ana Ivanovic maintained her sizzling form on Friday to storm into the final of the Auckland Classic, setting up a decider with seven-time Grand Slam champion Venus Williams.

Second seed Ivanovic dominated her doubles partner Kirsten Flipkens 6-0, 7-6 (7/3) in their semi-final, while Williams benefited from a walkover after fifth seed Jamie Hampton pulled out with an injury.

Ivanovic made the perfect start, breaking Flipkens three times to take the first set from the Belgian 6-0 in just 22 minutes.

Flipkens, who committed 13 first set unforced errors and three double faults, recovered to force a tie-break in the second.

But Ivanovic, who has not dropped a set in the tournament, never looked troubled and comfortably wrapped up the match.

The win gives the Serb, who has failed to capitalise on her sole Grand Slam success at the 2008 French Open, the chance to win her first WTA Tour title since November 2011.

It will be a confidence booster for the world number 16 ahead of Saturday's showdown with Williams, who has won eight of their nine previous meetings.

Ivanovic said she did not know if Williams, 33, would benefit from a day's rest.

"It's not really a disadvantage or an advantage -- it's really in your game and your match," she said. "It's going to be a tough one and I look forward to the challenge."

Williams advanced when Hampton withdrew after injuring her right hip during a morning warm-up.

It will be her first appearance in a WTA final since she won a tournament in Luxembourg in October 2012. She claimed her last Grand Slam in 2008.

Now ranked 47 and unseeded in Auckland, Williams is seeking to rejoin the game's elite after struggling with auto-immune disease and injury.

Hampton, a finalist here last year, said she was on the practice court when her hip "jammed" and she decided to concede after consulting with medical staff.It's incredibly disappointing," she said, adding that she was also likely to miss next week's Sydney International in a bid to avoid aggravating the hip before the Australian Open.

"I would have loved to have had the opportunity to play such a great champion and the opportunity to win my first title, but it's how the cookie crumbles."

Read more on:    ana ivanovic  |  tennis

What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk


Which is your favourite Grand Slam of the year?

Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


With the Absa Premiership in full swing, who will be crowned champions when all is said and done? Will Mamelodi Sundowns defend their title? Or can Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates or Bidvest Wits mount a serious challenge? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.