Czech teenager Linda Fruhvirtova advanced to the first WTA Tour final of her career as she produced a late comeback to defeat former French Open semi-finalist Nadia Podoroska at the WTA Chennai Open on Saturday.
In a thrilling match that produced some of the best tennis of the week in front of a packed stadium, the 17-year-old came from 2-4 down in the final set to beat Podoroska 5-7, 6-2, 6-4 in two hours and 53 minutes.
Speaking in her on-court interview, Fruhvirtova, who is projected to break into the world’s top 100 for the first time next week, said it was the best atmosphere she had ever played in.
She will take on third seed Magda Linette, a former world top-35 player, in Sunday’s final as the Pole advanced when her opponent Katie Swan was forced to retire while trailing 3-0 in the first set. Heat illness was the reason the Brit had to pull out. She was involved in a late-night thriller a few hours back, with her quarterfinal ending just short of 3 am.
Linette, a two-time WTA singles champion, will be competing in her first WTA Tour final of the year while Fruhvirtova will be aiming to win her first WTA Tour level title.
The pair have met once earlier with 30-year-old Linette winning their round-of-16 encounter last year in Cleveland in two tight sets. Linette is ranked 67 currently, while Fruhvirtova is current career high of 130.
Meanwhile, top seeds Gabriela Dabrowski/ Luisa Stefani defeated Peangtarn Plipuech/ Moyuka Uchikima 6-3, 6-3 in 61 minutes. Stefani is competing in her first tournament since the 2021 US Open due to injury and the pair will take on Anna Blinkova/ Natela Dzalamidze in Sunday’s final.
WTA Chennai Open Singles Semi-Final Results (September 17, 2022)
- Linda Fruhvirtova beat Nadia Podoroska 5-7, 6-2, 6-4
- (3) Magda Linette beat Katie Swan 3-0 (retired)
WTA Chennai Open Doubles Semi-Final Results (September 17, 2022)
- Gabriela Dabrowski/ Luisa Stefani beat Peangtarn Plipuech/ Moyuka Uchikima 6-3, 6-3