Dubai Tennis Championships: Petra Kvitova to meet Belinda Bencic in final

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

The unseeded world number 45 overcame the Czech two-time Grand Slam champion in three sets 6-3, 1-6, 6-2 at the Aviation Club Tennis Centre.

"We agreed that the next title I won, we would go skydiving", the Swiss said after ending a four-year trophy drought, explaining that the dare-devil plan may not please her father and coach, Ivan.

"I think I'm pleased with my kind of mental focus after losing the first set, that I was calmer when I came back and played from the beginning of the second set".

Belinda Bencic secured a spot in the final by stunning two-time champion Elina Svitolina 6-2, 3-6, 7-6 (3) on Friday at the Dubai Duty Free Championships in the United Arab Emirates.

The 28-year-old Czech, this year's Australian Open runner-up and the champion in Dubai in 2013, won 3-6 6-2 6-4. Kvitova, victor of the event in 2013, beat Kuzmova in just 62 minutes and said she felt her game was on the rise again after losing the Australian Open final to Naomi Osaka and winning just one match a week later. Svitolina stormed back in style to claim the second set a conquer a decisive 5-3 lead in the second. "I'm so excited, I was screaming like a baby when I won", Hsieh said in victory. "I felt it the last match a little bit. To play against her, you need to be ready on the legs a lot, which I was not". It was the second seed's 17th victory of 2019 - a feat bettered by no one - and it will be her third final of the season and 35th of her career. The Swiss has finally managed to recover her condition after the struggle with her back and the wrist operation.

The world No 37's triumph, which came after she had been a break down in the final set, ended Svitolina's hopes of becoming the first woman to win the tournament three times in a row following her 2017 and 2018 successes. She admitted that, due to the distraction of appearing in court at the trial of the person who attacked her two years ago, she had not prepared properly for the tournament.

"I think from 3-5, I just completely zoomed out. Hopefully I have a few hours to do something".

"I didn't really play the best at the end of the first set".

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

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