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Radwanska faces Petrova in final

Defending champion Agnieszka Radwanska pulverised Angelique Kerber 6-1, 6-1 to set up a final with Nadia Petrova at the Pan Pacific Open on Friday. Russian Petrova upset eighth seed Samantha Stosur 6-4, 6-2 in a surprisingly one-sided match to advance to her first final at the WTA premier five event in Tokyo.

Arms, neck and shoulders criss-crossed with taping, third seed Radwanska was in awesome form. The big-hitting Pole completed an easy win in just 59 minutes. German Kerber failed to hold serve in the first set, and was left to watch as several Radwanska bombs flew past her racquet as her serves fell short and were smashed back with interest. Radwanska, mixing up her game with lobs and delicate drop shots, wrapped up victory by forcing the fifth seed into a wild backhand that landed in the tramlines on her fourth match point.

Petrova, the 17th seed, chasing her second title of the season, came into the match with a 5-3 record over Stosur, last year’s US Open champion. Stosur committed a string of unforced errors and Petrova closed out the match following another errant forehand from the Australian after one hour, 47 minutes.


SIMON IN SEMIS

Gilles Simon reached the semifinals of the Thailand Open 6-4, 6-1 on Friday as he defeated fellow Frenchman Gael Monfils, who was feeling the strain after missing four months with injury. The fourth seed who won the 2009 edition, will play a semifinal against top seed Janko Tipsarevic after the ATP number 9 beat Spain’s Fernando Verdasco 7-6 (7-5), 6-4.

Tipsarevic won five straight points in the opening-set tiebreaker from 2-5 down to take the set to start his push to victory. ‘Today it was another battle from the baseline, he made me suffer and ran me around the court,’ said the Serb, bidding for a place in the year-end Masters in London. ‘It was a really tough match. We never have easy matches,’ added Simon.
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