American Sofia Kenin is celebrating making the first WTA singles final of her career.
The 20-year-old stormed into the Hobart International final with a 6-2 6-4 win over sixth seed and 2016 champion Alize Cornet today.
“It’s amazing. I’m really happy to have got into the final,” Kenin said.
The victory was the No.56-ranked Kenin’s third over a seeded player this week, having also beaten top seed Caroline Garcia and seventh seed Kirsten Flipkens in earlier rounds. She is yet to drop a set in her first visit to Hobart.
“I’ve beaten a lot of top players this past week, so I’m really happy with the way I’m playing,” Kenin said.
Kenin comfortably won the opening set, but Cornet showed her fighting spirit to race to a 3-0 lead in the second.
A leg injury was hampering Cornet’s game, allowing Kenin to regain control of the match. The American won five consecutive games, admitting nerves began to rise as she closed in on victory.
“I tried to just calm myself down, not get over excited and play one point at a time,” Kenin said of her mindset at the end of the match.
.@SonyaKenin seals a spot in her first ever WTA singles final!
— WTA (@WTA) January 11, 2019
A disappointed Cornet said she woke up with an abductor injury this morning, but even with the Australian Open days away, did not consider withdrawing.
“I always give everything in everything that I’m doing. That was not really an option,” Cornet said. “When I’m on court I cannot give up, I try to the end.
“I was dreaming of winning twice here in Hobart, so I’ll give myself another chance next year.”
Kenin now faces Anna Karolina Schmiedlova in tomorrow’s final. The No.77-ranked Slovakian upset Switzerland’s Belinda Bencic in a three-set semifinal earlier today.
“She’s playing well, we’re both playing well. So hopefully it’ll be a good match,” Kenin said.
Kenin won their only previous meeting in August last year.