Henin, Jankovic in Rogers Cup final

August 18, 2007 09:29 PM
TORONTO (TICKER) -- It should come as no surprise that Justine Henin is in another final.

The top-seeded Belgian overwhelmed Chinese qualifier Zi Yan, 6-3, 6-0, in the first of Saturday's semifinal matches at the $1.34 million Rogers Cup.

In her seventh finals appearance in 10 Tour events this season, Henin is seeking her sixth title of the campaign and 35th career.

The world No. 1, Henin's finals opponent is Jelena Jankovic, a 5-7, 6-3, 6-2 winner over No. 12 Tatiana Golovin in Saturday's other semifinal.

The 2003 champion of this hardcourt event, Henin has shown very little rust despite playing in her first tournament since Wimbledon in July. The 25-year-old is unbeaten in eight sets here en route to improving her season record to 42-4.

This was the first meeting between Henin and the 22-year-old Yan, who reached her first semifinal of the year after No. 7 Marion Bartoli of France was forced to retire in the second set of Friday's quarterfinal with a viral illness. Yan was leading, 6-2, 3-0, when play was stopped.

Henin's return to form cannot be good news for Jankovic, who will be playing in her seventh final of the season on Sunday.

Including four meetings this year, Henin owns a 6-0 lead in the all-time series, with five of those victories coming in semifinal matches. This will mark their first meeting in a Tour final.

Still, the Serbian has won a career-best four titles this season, including the hardcourt Auckland back in January.

Playing in her third semifinal of the year, Golovin did not make things easy for Jankovic in their evening match.

Whether it was an uncharacteristic collapse by Jankovic or simply solid play on her part, Golovin pulled off an improbable first-set victory. The 19-year-old fell behind, 5-2, but stormed back to break the world's third-ranked player three times en route to winning five straight games to close the set.

After losing the first game of the second set, Jankovic returned to form as she converted 13-of-15 first-serve points, broke Golovin twice and saved both break points she faced.

After trading a break point with Golovin early in the third set, Jankovic rolled to the finish by winning the final four games.

First prize is $181,980.

 

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