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Monday, March 27, 2023

Bencic reaches second final of the year in Abu Dhabi

Bencic reaches second final of the year in Abu Dhabi

The Swiss second seed won comfortably 6-2, 6-3 for his 11th win of 2023, tying Australian Open champion Sabalenka for most tour-level wins to date.

Olympic champion Bencic won the Adelaide International last month, her seventh career WTA singles title.

“The work we’ve done on the practice field has shown. I didn’t expect it to be this fast, but that doesn’t mean we have to slow down,” Bencic said after the 90-minute win.

Haddad Maia won three sets in three sets in a total of seven hours and 43 minutes en route to the semi-finals, while Bencic played in just three hours and 20 minutes in the previous rounds.

World No. 9 Bencic faces Lyudmila Samsonova in Sunday’s title match, looking to break a previous 3-0 loss to the Russian staple.

World No. 19 Samsonova beat China’s Zheng Qinwen 6-4, 1-6, 6-4 in two hours and 19 minutes in the semifinals.

Eighth seed Samsonova won three titles last season, including defeating Zheng Zhi in the Tokyo final.

On Saturday, Samsonova had 10 ACEs, while Zheng Zhi had 15.

The 24-year-old Russian won the first title of her career by beating Bencic in the final at Berlin Meadows 2021.

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