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Martic reaches Malaysian Open final

Croatia's Petra Martic battled for over three hours on Sunday to defeat former world number one Jelena Jankovic and make it to the finals of the rain-interrupted BMW Malaysian Open.

sports Updated: Mar 04, 2012 14:43 IST
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Croatia's Petra Martic battled for over three hours on Sunday to defeat former world number one Jelena Jankovic and make it to the finals of the rain-interrupted BMW Malaysian Open.

The fifth seed will face Taiwan's Hsieh Su-wei -- the first Asian to reach the final in Malaysia -- in the title decider later Sunday after battling to a 6-7 (5/7), 7-5, 7-6 (7/5) victory.

The two finalists will both be chasing their first WTA singles title.

Originally scheduled for Saturday, the Martic-Jankovic semifinal was postponed due to heavy rain.

Martic had a mixed day with her service, raining down aces but also committing nine double faults. Jankovic also struggled with her serve with nine double faults of her own.

Both players had opportunities to finish the game but were hampered by unforced errors. In the end, it was Martic's calm under pressure that earned her a ticket to the final.

"Playing in these conditions is physically tough for both players," said Jankovic, who also lost in the semifinals in Dubai last Friday.

"Her serves were consistent but it could have gone either way. There can be only one winner and the better player (on the day) won.

"I'm not in her shoes and can't say if it'll affect her in the final, but I'm surely tired. It's not easy playing two matches in a day in these conditions."

Jankovic, the number two seed, reached the semifinals on Saturday without having to pick up her racquet after Japan's Ayumi Morita pulled out injured.

Top seed and world number five Agnieszka Radwanska pulled out Friday due to injury after a string of rain delays caused a schedule pile-up that forced her to face two opponents the day before.