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Rediff.com  » Sports » Dementieva, Safarova in Paris Indoors final

Dementieva, Safarova in Paris Indoors final

February 14, 2010 09:18 IST

Number one seed Elena Dememtieva reached the final of the Paris Indoor Open for the second year running on Saturday when she recovered from a set down to beat 18-year-old American Melanie Oudin 4-6, 6-3, 6-3.

The Russian, ranked number seven in the world, will face Lucie Safarova in the final after the Czech also came from a set down to overturn the Italian second seed Flavia Pennetta 4-6, 6-3, 6-4.

Dementieva, who was beaten in last year's final by Amelie Mauresmo, was given a shock early on when Oudin, who has been struggling all week with a heavy cold, stole the first set.

She bounced back to level at one set all before Oudin, currently ranked 53rd in the world, again hinted at an upset by breaking in the third game of the final set.

The Russian responded in commanding fashion, taking the next four games and losing the match on her own serve.

In the other semi-final Safarova showed no little courage in coming back from a set down to beat Pennetta.

"It was a very important win for me," said Safarova, who reached the final in 2007 when she lost in the three sets to Nadia Petrova.

"Flavia is ranked 12th in the world, she's a very good player and still, I was able to stay focused throughout the match.

"We battled for every point. I had to take risks but I did so at the right moments and it paid off."

Number two seed Pennetta appeared to be heading for the final when she comfortably took the first set.

But Safarova fought back in the second as both players struggled to hold their service.

Showing greater willingness than Pennetta to come to the net, Safarova pressured the Italian into a number of unforced errors which led to her taking the set 6-3.

The third set went with serve until Safarova again scented an opening in the ninth game when Pennetta began with a double fault. The Czech upped the pressure and forced the crucial break, before serving out for the match.

Source:
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