Leonie Kung advances to 1st final, faces Magda Linette at Thailand Open

Ruben Hill
February 16, 2020

Hibino, who is ranked 84th in the world, will take on the 283rd ranked Leonie Kung of Switzerland.

The pair have never met before.

The bleeding of the seeds in the top-half saw Japan's Nao Hibino oust top-seed Elina Svitolina of Ukraine.

Linette, who reached the semifinals of the tournament a year ago, was two points from losing the first set when trailing 5-4 before she rallied and whipped two backhand cross-court winners to break her opponent for 5-5. It was surrendered back nearly immediately, but Hibino broke again, and then consolidated to take the set. The eighth seed also won in straight sets 6-4, 6-2 in 77 minutes. "I was happy to win the first set", said No. 283 Kung.

It's the first WTA final for the 19-year-old Kung.

World No. 4 Svitolina served five aces to win 6-1, 6-2, breaking Sanders' serve three times in the opening set and twice more in the second set.

"I had to step up my game and I think it was the key to the match". In the decisive set both players had trouble holding their serve but, in the end, Kung was able to out-last her opponent, winning in 2 hours and 18 minutes. That makes her a risky opponent because she holds no fear and has nothing to lose, but the Japanese should prevail.

Hibino will start the clear favourite against the teenage qualifier who has no previous experience at this level at all.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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