ADELAIDE, Australia: World number one Ashleigh Barty will warm up for the Australian Open with a final at the Adelaide International after a 3-6, 6-1, 7-6 (7/5) comeback win over Danielle Collins on Friday (Jan 17).
The Australian, whose matches have been 5,000-strong sellouts all week at Memorial Drive, will face Dayana Yastremska on Saturday for the title.
Ukrainian teenager Yastremska defeated her third top-20 opponent in a row with a 6-4, 7-6 (7/4) win over Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus.
The men's final will be a contest between in-form Andrey Rublev and South African Lloyd Harris, who defeated fellow qualifier Tommy Paul 6-4, 6-7 (3/7), 6-3.
Rublev is the first man since 2004 to play finals in the first two weeks of a season after the Doha champion outlasted Canadian Felix Auger-Aliassime in a 7-6 (7/5), 6-7 (7/9), 6-4 thriller which took a shade over three hours.
Auger-Aliassime, 19, saved two match points in the second set and grabbed a 3-0 lead in the third before his Russian opponent fought back.
"This match was unreal," said world number 18 Rublev.
"I don't know how I won. I lost myself a bit when I trailed 2-0 (third set). I told myself to start again, breathe and fight for every point."
– 'It makes me feel old' –
Barty took a while to get going against 27th-ranked American Collins who dominated the opening set.
But the second was a different story, with top seed Barty quickly finding her game to level the match.
The third set went to a tie-break after the players traded breaks of serve.
Barty lost a 4-2 lead in the breaker, but won on her second match point as a Collins return clipped the top of the net.
"I worked hard tonight, and we got the result that we're after," she said. "I felt I had a lot of clarity with what I wanted to do.
"Danielle has the ability to take the match out of your hands a little bit."
Barty beat Yastremska in their only previous meeting last March in Miami.
"Dayana brings a lot of variety to her game, she's an exceptional ball-striker. All of these young girls are hitting so hard, it makes me feel old," the 23-year-old said.
– Harris reaRead More – Source