Wang Qiang won two matches in the space of a couple of hours on Saturday to book her place in the final of the Hong Kong Open. The Chinese star, who has enjoyed a successful second half of the season by claiming victories at the Jiangxi and Guangzhou Opens, first had to finish off her quarter-final clash with top seed Elina Svitolina after it was held over from Friday due to a rain delay.
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Qiang was 5-2 up in the second set when the duo resumed their rivalry and it took her just nine minutes to wrap up the 6-2 6-4 victory.
The 26-year-old, who has also moved up to 24th in the world rankings over recent months, had a couple of hours’ break before she returned to the court for her semi-final clash with fourth seed Garbine Muguruza.
Things did not start well for Qiang – she lost the first set on a tie-break – but she was able to bounce back by winning the second.
However, she was in trouble once again during the decider as she fell 4-1 down before she dug deep to fight back and eventually prevail 6-7 6-4 7-5.
The Tianjin native will now face Ukrainian teenager Dayana Yastremska in Sunday’s showpiece after she overcame Zhang Shuai 7-5 6-4 in Saturday’s other semi to reach her first WTA final.
Qiang will be the favourite to win Sunday’s final but she was just happy to reflect on her Saturday heroics after victory over Muguruza.
“I felt nervous before the first match. I went on court a little bit shaky, but after two games it was okay. I just went for it,” Wang said at the close of her marathon day.
“I had nothing to lose against Muguruza because she’s a very good player. Both of us played very well today and I just tried to be more patient and use my chances.”