Akgul, Sania to clash for ITF title

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='http://www.ndtv.com/convergence/images/thumbnail/ver1/S/Saniamirza.jpg' class='caption'> Akgul Amanmuradova of Uzbekistan sets up a title clash with India's Sania Mirza in the GVK ITF Women's Tennis Tournament

Updated: February 25, 2007 09:28 IST
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Akgul Amanmuradova of Uzbekistan sliced her way to the final, defeating second seed Sai Jayalakshmi of India 6-4, 7-6 (7-5) to set up a title clash with another Indian, Sania Mirza, in the GVK ITF Women's Tennis Tournament here today. Mirza trounced fifth seed Chin Bee Khoo of Malaysia 4-6, 6-1, 6-1 in one of the semifinals. In a fierce one-and-a-half hour battle of attrition, Akgul, the 18-year old Economics student from Tashkent University, played some superb backhand slice shots and quality rallies to beat Sai via tie-breaker and storm into final. "I couldn't believe it. After winning the first set I was overwhelmed and dropped the first few games but picked up soon and the tie-breaker was very interesting," Akgul said. Jayalakshmi, on the other hand, said she committed too many unforced errors and her opponent didn't give her the slightest chance particularly in the tie-breaker. The big girl from Uzbek said "she would play her normal game in tomorrow's final against Sania, who will be having the support of home crowd". In the first semifinal, Sania, after dropping the first set, bounced back to account for Khoo 4-6, 6-1, 6-1 amidst cheers from the capacity audience. "I couldn't get her (Khoo) game properly in the first set which I lost but after I found my rhythm there was no difficulty in winning the next two sets," Sania said. (PTI)

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