Svitolina and Kvitova set up Berlin showdown
Elina Svitolina made a winning return to the match court by beating Anastasija Sevastova in the semifinals of the grass-court exhibition tournament in Berlin, advancing to the final against Petra Kvitova.
BERLIN, Germany - Top seed Elina Svitolina and two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova will square off in the grass-court final of the exhibition tournament in Berlin, after the pair won their semifinal matches in straight sets on Tuesday.
Svitolina, playing for the first time in non-WTA exhibition action since winning the Abierto GNP Seguros in Monterrey, Mexico in March, beat Latvia's Anastasija Sevastova, 7-6(2), 6-3, while Kvitova needed just 50 minutes on court to defeat No.2 seed Kiki Bertens, 6-3, 6-2.
"I think it was a good match with a lot of good rallies," Svitolina assessed. "For what was kind of my first match [since the tour's hiatus], it took a little bit of time for me to get into the fighting spirit, and Anastasija is a great fighter. In the end, it was a good match."
Later in the day, Kvitova was dominant from the start against Bertens, and won six games in a row from 2-0 down in the second set.
"Grass is definitely my favorite purpose to play on, so I'm really glad that I could play here and have another match tomorrow," Kvitova said after the match. "I played Elina many times but not on the grass, so I'm curious to see how she's playing on grass. Beating Anastasija today, she really had to play well. She likes when the balls are bouncing low, the same as me, so it should be a nice one tomorrow for sure.".
After Wednesday's final, the second stage of the week-long exhibition tournament will be held on a hard court at Berlin's Tempelhof Hangar from July 17-19.