Misc Tennis

Tomljanovic powers into first grass-court final in Birmingham | 23 June, 2024 | All News | News and Features | News and Events

Tomljanovic powers into first grass-court final in Birmingham | 23 June, 2024 | All News | News and Features | News and Events

Ajla Tomljanovic will contest her first WTA final in five-and-a-half years when she faces Yulia Putintseva for the Birmingham crown.

Birmingham, UK, 23 June 2024 | Matt Trollope

Birmingham, United Kingdom

Ajla Tomljanovic’s resurgence has continued, with the Australian defeating Anastasia Potapova to reach the WTA Birmingham Classic final.

Tomljanovic posted a 7-6(5) 6-4 win, surviving a tense first set and then breaking Potapova in the final game of the match to advance.

This marks her first appearance in a WTA-level final since Pattaya City in February 2019, and she will attempt to win her first career title after falling in her four previous finals.

She faces Yulia Putintseva – who has won four of their five previous meetings – in the decider.

“Playing on Sunday is always special because you really want to win, but at the same time you want to enjoy the moment. So I really hope tomorrow will be one to remember,” said the 31-year-old.

“I don’t want to really think about that, you know, it’s my I don’t know what number final and I haven’t won a title yet, but for sure it will play a bit of a role tomorrow.”

Tomljanovic becomes the third Australian into the Birmingham Classic final, after Jenny Byrne in 1992 and Ash Barty in 2017 and 2019.

Barty’s 2019 triumph saw her ascend to world No.1 for the first time.

Tomljanovic’s ranking has tumbled from a high of No.32 to 190th, after a knee injury ruled her out for much of 2023 and surgery to remove uterine fibroids sidelined her for three months earlier this season.

She is the third-lowest-ranked finalist at a WTA grass-court tournament in the Open era, and her performance this week in Birmingham is expected to boost her back up to No.135.

This result also means she has now reached tour-level finals on all three surfaces, yet grass is where Tomljanovic has especially thrived.

She is a two-time Wimbledon quarterfinalist and has won eight of her past nine matches on the surface, after reaching the ITF Surbiton quarterfinals as a qualifier two weeks ago.

She has built a 21-7 record on grass dating back to 2021.

“I’m feeling really happy. I really came in with not many expectations this week, but I had full belief that I could play really good tennis here, so just really pleased that I made…

Click Here to Read the Full Original Article at Tennis.com.au – Tennis Australia…