Kudryavtseva edges doubles partner to reach Launceston final
Alla Kudryavtseva and Han Xinyun will face off in the Launceston International Pro Tour final after coming through contrasting semifinals on Saturday.
Unseeded Russian Alla Kudryavtseva has edged out her doubles partner Vania King in a deciding set tiebreaker to reach the final of the Neville-Smith Forest Products Launceston International on Saturday.
In an entertaining match that lasted more than two hours, Kudryavtseva fought back against the American to eventually post a 1-6 6-3 7-6(5) victory.
Both players arrived in Launceston in reasonable touch, having recently reached the doubles quarterfinals at the Australian Open, where they lost to No.13 seeds Julia Goerges and Karolina Pliskova.
“Vania started off really well,” Kudryavtseva said of the semifinal encounter. “I felt like I had to be very aggressive which resulted in too many mistakes. In the second set, I dialed my tennis in a little and found my groove.”
With both players formerly residing inside the world’s top 60, it was always going to be a match played at the highest standards, and when the American held a 5-3 advantage in the final set, Kudryavtseva was forced to dig deep.
“We had a very good level in that last set,” she said. “In the tiebreaker, we both played unbelievable tennis, but in the end, I think I was able to handle her shots just a little bit better.”
“I’m very glad with this result. I’ve beaten some really good players this week.”
The Russian was also quick to praise King after the match. “Vania is great,” she said. “We brought out the best in each other today. I’m really happy about that.”
In terms of their doubles aspirations, Kudryavtseva said the pair has plans to play out the year together. “We both want to get our singles rankings back up, and similar goals make for a better team. We’re on the same page.”
Kudryavtseva, 28, will face China’s Han Xinyun in Sunday’s final after the fourth seed upset Japan’s Risa Ozaki, the No.2 seed, 6-1 6-4.
“I have a pretty good idea what Han does,” the Russian said of her upcoming opponent. “She has a lot of tricky shots and she’s a lefty. It will be challenging but I have some ideas.”
Meanwhile, unseeded Jessica Moore was the best-performed Australian at the $75,000 ITF event in Launceston, reaching the quarterfinals with a victory over No.5 seed Mandy Minella of Luxembourg. Moore bowed out to King in straight sets on Friday.
Live streaming of the final is available at www.tennis.com.au/protour/scores.