Daria Kasatkina (RUS) vs.  Anna-Lena Friedsam (GER)
There are late bloomers in every sport, and now many older tennis players are finally showcasing their talent. Friedsam’s story was derailed by injury though; ranked as high as forty-five in 2016, Friedsam’s ranking dropped out of the top hundred in 2017 due to injury (legs; shoulder surgery in 2016; and shoulder surgery again in 2018, which kept her out for almost ten months) and it has been a tedious climb back. Today’s 6-3, 3-6, 6-2 defeat of the number seven seed, Kasatkina, was significant.
Anna-Lena Friedsam Fighting Hard
Making this final in Lyon was huge for the German, who has not been to a WTA singles final since 2015. It will be even sweeter for the German if she can win tomorrow to claim her first WTA main tour singles title; however, even if she does not win, this is a positive move in the right direction for the twenty-six-year old. Friedsam will play the number one seed, Sofia Kenin, and it will be their first encounter. The American, Kenin, is having the season of her career, claiming her first major title at the Australian Open earlier this season. This will be an interesting match because Kenin has not played her best tennis since winning the title in Australia. In fact, in two consecutive tournaments, she lost the first match she played, a result no doubt of the mental and physical fatigue she was feeling post the Australian Open title run.
Kenin Finding A Way
Kenin has needed three sets to defeat her last three opponents en route to her first final appearance since winning her first major earlier in the season. Friedsam did not have it that much easier as she had to go three sets in her last two matches and she was looking a tad winded in her match earlier today; however, I am sure the German will be excited to contest her first final since 2015 and adrenaline will give her the extra boost she needs to try to upset the number one seed. Will the German rise to the occasion and claim her first career singles title, or will nerves and Kenin ruin her plans?
SOURCE OF IMAGES: SERVE AND RALLY ORIGINALS