Tennis: Heavyweights to meet in ASB Classic final

Agnieszka Radwanska. Photo by Getty
Agnieszka Radwanska. Photo by Getty

Yanina Wickmayer will meet Agnieszka Radwanska in tomorrow's final of the ASB Classic after the pair overcame their opponents and difficult conditions at Stanley St today.

Wickmayer, the tournament's third seed, beat eighth seed Mona Barthel 6-4 1-6 7-6 in one hour 47 minutes. Radwanska, the top seed and world No 4, was three minutes quicker in defeating Jamie Hampton in straight sets 7-6 (4) 7-6 (3).

It will be a fitting conclusion to the ASB Classic because Wickmayer and Radwanska have been the two best players at this tournament. But it will be a contrast of styles with the hard-hitting Wickmayer coming up against the guile of Radwanska.

Both have come under pressure - Wickmayer was blown off the court in the second set of her match - but both have relied on their experience to progress. Both semifinals today were played in blustery conditions.

Wickmayer will play her third ASB Classic final in four years - she won in 2010 - but had to withstand a withering assault from Barthel. The lanky German used her big serve and groundstrokes to good effect but crumbled towards the end of the match, sending down two double faults in the final-set tiebreaker to hand Wickmayer the initiative.

Radwanska looked on course to cruise into the final when she led 7-6 4-0 but Hampton stormed back into the match to level at 4-4. The American is something of a hot-and-cold player who is prone to momentum swings, and it seemed inevitable Radwanska's greater poise and experience would see her prevail.