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Schmiedlova in Hobart International final

IANS  |  Hobart 

Unseeded Slovakian stormed into her first WTA final in after defeating former World No.7 in three sets at the International meet.

The 24-year-old, World No.77, reeled off the last four games of the match, holding her own confidently against a frustrated and emotional Bencic, reports

She fired 42 winners to Bencic's 26 and won the match 7-6(2), 4-6, 6-2 after a two-and-a-half-hour battle.

"I still can't believe it, because I was not expecting this at all," Schmiedlova said after the match.

"Especially tough today against Belinda - I've known her since I was a child, we practice together sometimes and she's a really good friend of mine. So it wasn't an easy match. She's a great player, but it's a really great feeling the way I played," she added.

Bencic had begun the match confidently. However, it was Schmiedlova who claimed the first break at 4-2.

She dominated the tiebreak, allowing her opponent just two points as she won the opening set.

Bencic played better in the second set, which she won, sending the match into a decider.

"I think I improved a bit on my serve, and just tried to be focused on every point. I think that third set was really good, better than the first for me," Schmiedlova said.

"I lost in China, playing very bad, then I came here and it was really windy. I didn't really play very well in practices, so I tried to just win maybe one match here or play one long match. To be in the final, I never expected it," she added.

Schmiedlova will now play against either sixth seed from or the fast-rising American

If Schmiedlova wins the final, she will be the first Slovak to lift the trophy since 2002 champion



(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Fri, January 11 2019. 18:06 IST