Pennetta to face Radwanska in Indian Wells final

Sat Mar 15, 2014 2:05am EDT
 
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(Reuters) - Italian veteran Flavia Pennetta upset China's Australian Open champion Li Na on Friday to join Poland's Agnieszka Radwanska in the women's final of the BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells.

The 32-year-old Pennetta qualified for the biggest singles final of her career after a 7-6(5) 6-3 drubbing of an out-of-sorts Li.

Pennetta will face Radwanska in Sunday's final after the Pole avenged her loss to Romania's Simona Halep in Qatar last month with a 6-3 6-4 win on the Californian desert hardcourts.

Radwanska, ranked third in the world, sealed the first set with an ace after she broke Halep's opening service game but found herself trailing the second when the Romanian broke.

But the 25-year-old Pole regained control, getting back on level terms then getting a second break and serving out her victory to reach her first final at Indian Wells.

"What I was trying to do was play aggressively from the beginning of the match and just try to go for my shots," said Radwanska.

"I was lucky. I think I was serving better than other days, so that helped today as well. I think it was a pretty good match."

Halep took some consolation from her defeat as she will rise to fifth place in the world when the new rankings are released on Monday.

"It was a tough match," said Halep. "She played really well.   Continued...

 
Mar 12, 2014; Indian Wells, CA, USA; Agnieszka Radwanska (POL) reacts during her match against Jelena Jankovic (not pictured) at the BNP Paribas Open at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden. Radwanska won 7-5, 2-6, 6-4. Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports