Two players captured solid straight-set victories to punch their ticket into Abu Dhabi's final round. Aryna Sabalenka upped her winning streak to 14 straight matches, but Veronika Kudermetova is prepared to give the Belarusian a challenge.
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The Russian has been steadily building and working on her game over the past couple of years and it's paying off. The world No. 46 defeated Marta Kostyuk 7-6 (8), 6-4, a teenager who was also having an outstanding week in the desert. The 23-year-old is through to her first WTA final, where she will attempt to end Sabalenka's win streak.
Hayley Carter & Luisa Stefani
It was a huge day for American Hayley Carter and Brazil's Luisa Stefani as they took out 2020 US Open champions Laura Siegemund and Vera Zvonareva 7-5, 1-6, 10-8. The doubles tandem will face Japan's Ena Shibahara and Shuko Aoyama in the Abu Dhabi doubles final.
Ena Shibahara & Shuko Aoyama
Tour veteran Shuko Aoyama and newcomer Ena Shibahara are already achieving success at the very first tournament of the year. The Japanese duo soared past Alja Tomljanovic and Sofia Kenin 6-4, 6-3, to reach the final round.
Is she unstoppable? It appears that no one can stop the Belarusian from winning. The world No. 10 ended last year by winning two tournaments and she's into her third straight final. Sabalenka served up a solid 6-3, 6-2 win against Maria Sakkari to extend her winning streak to 14. She hit just eight unforced errors during the semifinal affair.
Although the Greek didn't get the result she wanted against Sabalenka, she's still heading Down Under with great match play under her belt, and she'll have confidence from pulling off the biggest win of her career against Kenin in the quarterfinals.