First time finalists Ashleigh Barty, Karolina Pliskova to fight for 'dream' Wimbledon title

  • Second seed Pliskova who beat Aryna Sabalenka in a closely fought semifinal said she expects a tough match against World No.1 Ash Barty in the final.
Karolina Pliskova and Ashleigh Barty
Karolina Pliskova and Ashleigh Barty
Published on Jul 09, 2021 04:05 PM IST
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Ashleigh Barty and Karolina Pliskova – two first-time finalists – will face each other in the Wimbledon 2021 women’s singles final after both of them registered hard-fought wins in their respective semifinals.

Eighth seed Pliskova, who beat Aryna Sabalenka in a closely fought semifinal, said she expects a tough match against World No.1 Ashleigh Barty in the final.

"She has a Grand Slam, but also for her is the first Wimbledon final. I think we both have good chances," said Pliskova.

The 29-year-old Czech player is well aware that Barty has had the edge over her in the head-to-head battles so far but she is confident of putting her best foot forward.

"I mean, we had some good matches. Of course, I lost more. But I think she has an extremely difficult game to play. It's going to be difficult on grass because of her slice and just her game overall,” said Pliskova.

For Australia’s Barty, it’s more like a dream come true to play in her maiden Wimbledon final.

"I wasn't sure if it would ever happen honestly. I think Wimbledon for me has been an amazing place of learning. Probably 2018, 2019 (3rd and 4th rd exits respectively) was some of my toughest weeks playing. To come away with losses in those two tournaments, I learned a hell of a lot. I think a lot of the time your greatest growth comes from your darkest times. I think that's why this tournament has been so important to me," said the 2019 French Open champion.

Barty's movement around the court has been a feature of her campaign which she admits seemed a remote possibility when she retired from her second round match at the French Open with a left hip injury.

"I think we had 23 or 24 days in between finishing up in Paris and my first round here," said Barty.

"To be honest, it was going to be touch-and-go.

"Everything had to be spot on to give myself a chance to play pain-free and to play knowing that I could trust my body," she said.

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