Thursday, 28 January 2016

Kerber into first GS final

Angilique Kerber was rapt to finally manage a win over Vika Azarenka and in such an important match as a GS semi. Her opponent is not as highly credentialed as Vika but 47th ranked Johanna Konta deserved respect coming into the second semi final or Angie could find herself on the next plane out of here.  The winner would have the reward of her first GS Final, and Serena as the opponent.

Konta served first and nervously found herself at 0-40 with unforced errors.  A couple of winners and she fought back to deuce before another break point was converted and the serve was lost, Kerber leading 1-0.  Kerber saved a break point before holding and games were 2-0.  

A Konta forehand winner was insufficient to prevent a 15-40 scoreline and unforced errors produced a second break of the British serve, Kerber's lead now 3-0.  The fourth game saw Kerber's forehand break down and on the second break point Konta hit a forehand smash winner to break serve and trail 1-3.

An ace and winners from both sides and Konta held serve with ease, closing to 2-3.  Games were 3-3 following another run of unforced Kerber errors on her serve.  

The players both held their next service games easily and the score was 4-4.  A double fault from Konta failed to stop her holding serve and leading 5-4, forcing Kerber to hold and stay in the set.  This she did, forcing Konta into error on the final two points for 5-5.

A Konta double fault and 0-30.  An unforced error and two break points.  Another unforced error on the second of the break points and the serve was lost.  6-5 to Kerber and serving for the set.

A love game from Kerber, sealed with a forehand winner and she had the first set 7-5.

First game of set two and Kerber took control, the forehand winners setting up three break points, the second converted for a 1-0 lead.  Kerber served a double fault and was down a break point.  An ace fixed that and the game was won for a 2-0 advantage.  

Konta held serve, a backhand winner the highlight before a love game consolidated Kerber's lead 3-1. Unforced errors, mainly off her backhand, cost Konta dearly in the next two games where she lost serve, broken on the second break point, and then could only win a single point on the Kerber serve.  Angie led 5-1 and was almost into the final.

Konta held easily for 2-5 and Kerber had the chance to serve for the match.

Forehand winner by Konta and a backhand winner in reply by Kerber 15-15.  Backhand long by Konta 30-15.  Backhand crosscourt winner by Konta 30-30. Service winner and match point.  Backhand return long and the match was over.

Angie Kerber defeated Johanna Konta 7-5 6-2 and now had Serena Williams in the final to battle.

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