Comeback queen Bencic stuns champion to reach Dubai final

Posted February 26, 2019

Belinda Bencic made another late winning charge over a Top 10 opponent on Friday to set up a Dubai Championships final against Petra Kvitova.

Bidding to add a second Dubai title to the one she won in 2013, and a 27th trophy overall, Kvitova will meet two-time defending champion Elina Svitolina or Belinda Bencic in the final. "I was still there", said Swiss star Bencic whose career has been blighted by a series of back and wrist injuries. "I don't know why".

Second seed Petra Kvitova recovered from a set down against Chinese Taipei's Hsieh Su-wei to end the unseeded player's run at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships to reach her third final of the year on Friday.

Bencic, unseeded in the tournament, clinched her first WTA title in almost four years, defeating the Australian Open finalist 6-3, 1-6, 6-2.

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When Petra Kvitova is told that it's still February yet she has already reached three finals in 2019, the Czech world No. 3 smiles and simply says: "That's nice". "It was really seeing who I play first round". It was a tough first set. Svitolina stormed back in style to claim the second set a conquer a decisive 5-3 lead in the second.

"I wish I could have played better", Svitolina said. "I felt it the last match a little bit".

Hsieh, who lost to Kvitova in the Sydney second round, snatched the opening set on a pair of breaks, with the Czech forced into a fight back in the second. Second seed Kvitova, victor of the event in 2013, left nothing to chance as she crushed Viktoria Kuzmova 6-4, 6-0. This is unbelievable to be in the final when I'm escaping from something. She admits that, due to the distraction of having to appear in court at the trial of the person who attacked her in her home at the end of 2016, she had not prepared properly for the tournament.

Of her sparkling form so far this year she said: "It's a bit weird, to be honest. To play against her, you need to be ready on the legs a lot, which I was not".

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Kvitová looked to have Bencic on the ropes when she broke the Swiss' serve twice in a second set which she won comfortably. "Hopefully I have a few hours to do something with me".

There will be no three-peat for Elina Svitolina in Dubai.

"I think from 3-5 [in the final set], I just completely zoomed out. "(But) I think he's aware that it might not be possible.

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