Petra Kvitova, Eugenie Bouchard advance to Wimbledon women's final

2011 Wimbledon champ Petra Kvitova defeats Lucie Safarova, 7-6 (6), 6-1, to return to final

A veteran and a fast-rising newcomer will play in Saturday’s Wimbledon women’s final.

In Friday's semifinals, Petra Kvitova, 2011 champion here, played her friend and fellow Czech Republic Fed Cup member Lucie Safarova and beat her, as most expected. This was Safarova’s first appearance in a Grand Slam semifinal.

Safarova stayed close in the first set, even after having her serve broken early on. She broke back, got to a tiebreaker and finally yielded to Kvitova. After that, Kvitova found her range, played with complete confidence and won out, 7-6 (6), 6-1.

“I had trouble at the start,” Kvitova said. “I had to try and think that it was just another player across the other side of the net. She played better than I did in the first set.”

Kvitova, the highest seeded player to get through to the semis at No. 6, will play Canadian Eugenie Bouchard, who also had to get through a tiebreaker in the first set before imposing her will on Romania’s Simona Halep.

Bouchard won the first set, 7-6 (5), and ran off to a 5-1 lead in the second. Halep, a gritty player who injured her left ankle early in the first set, keep plugging along and ended up saving five match points before finally yielding in the second set, 6-2.

Bouchard, only 20, entered the tournament seeded No. 13 and has already climbed into the top 10 for the first time in her career. She had also reached the semifinals at the Australian and French opens.

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