Petra Kvitova and Donna Vekic will play in Sunday's final of WTA 500 bett1open in Berlin. Both the players have secured their spot in final after a long day full of action, as the hosts were forced to reschedule all the quarterfinals supposed to be played on Friday for the following day due to the persistent rain. It is 7th career's final of the grass tournament for Kvitova, who will play for her 6th title on grass surface. For Vekic it's the 4th final on grass. The Croatian has already won one title on this surface in Nottingham in 2017.
Just 6 sets were played in the early afternoon, as three quarterfinals matches got ended up in straight sets and one of them was not even played. Veronika Kudermetova has pulled out of the tournament due to a left hip injury, which has denied a super interesting match against her and Ekaterina Alexandrova. It was expected to be a big revenge for the last week's WTA 250 Libema Open with both players showing a great performance in Berlin so far as well.
Alexandrova did not need to play two matches on Saturday and could wait for her semifinal's opponent from another great match-up between 7th seed Petra Kvitova and 3rd seed Caroline Garcia. Kvitova was a pre-match favourite and proved to be a dominant force, as the Czech has created 13 breakpoint chances in compare to just one breakpoint created by Garcia. The world's number 4 was not giving up though, as she managed to force a tiebreak in long second set, despite Kvitova putting an immense pressure and producing breakpoints in 4 out of 6 service games of Garcia. Despite a good defence of Garcia during the majority of crucial points, Kvitova has secured a spot in semifinals, winning 6-4 7-6(3).
Donna Vekic was a favorite ahead of the match against Elina Avanesyan - the big surprise of this tournament, who approached the quarterfinals as a lucky loser. Vekic was feeling really well on the court from the start, clinching the opening set with a score 6-2 and moving up into double break advantage with a 3-0 lead in second set. Barely anyone could expect any turnover here, but Avanesyan did not give up and made up whole the gap to force a tiebreak. Vekic has turned up her level again and won the 13th game without giving away any single point.
Maria Sakkari was playing against Marketa Vondrousova in a match, which had not any clear favorite related to odds. The opening set was the proof of those predictions, as it was even battle, ended up in a tiebreak. Vondrousova had something to regret there, as the Czech was leading 6-3, but did not convert any of 4 setpoints and allowed her opponent to comeback from this to grab the set with a score 9-7 in tiebreak. Vondrousova has dropped the ball since then, while Sakkari has definitely felt the wind in her sails and dominated the second set, moving into semis with a score 7-6(7) 6-1.
Donna Vekic has fought for her place in a final in a really intense match against Maria Sakkari, which ended up in a favour of the Croatian with a score 6-4 7-6(8). Despite just two sets played, the match took as long as 2:18 hours. It was a tight battle with some chances for both and could end up in a whole distance settlement, but Sakkari did not manage to serve for the second set despite being 5-3 up. Second set got decided in long tiebreak, where Vekic needed 4 matchpoints, but has finally secured her second final of the year, following the victory on hard surface in Monterrey in the first week of March.
The match between Petra Kvitova and Ekaterina Alexandrova was expected to be a highlight of this long day in Berlin, as a clash between two great grass court specialists. The double Wimbledon champion Kvitova has faced a player who approached this match being undefeated on grass with 7 wins on a roll, having already a title in her belt from the last week. Alexandrova was even a slight pre-match favorite related to odds, but it had no reflection on court, as Kvitova showed a stunning performance. The Czech did not face any single breakpoint and decided both sets with breaks gained in the early phases, moving into final with a 6-3 6-4 after just 81 minutes of play.
Kvitova and Vekic will play against each other for the 6th time in their professional careers. The outcome of previous matches favorizes Kvitova, who won 4 out of 5 meetings, being on a streak of 3 wins in a row, including last year's the only one grass match between both in Eastbourne. Considering this and all the achievements on grass, the Czech will be a confident favorite ahead of tomorrow's match.