Aryna Sabalenka swept into the final of the Abu Dhabi Open with her 14th consecutive win, beating Maria Sakkari 6-3 6-2 on Tuesday.
Sabalenka hit eight aces to book a final against Veronika Kudermetova in the first WTA tournament of the year.
“I’m really looking forward to this final,” Sabalenka said, adding she was trying to focus on improving her footwork.
“I’m just focusing on the right things. This helps me to, first of all, not think about all these wins, and secondly, to keep winning.”
Sabalenka finished last season with wins at the indoor tournaments in Ostrava and Linz, and the Belarusian has won her first five matches of the new season in Abu Dhabi.
She is 8-4 in career tour finals and has won her last five. Sabalenka will rise to No.7 in the world rankings if she wins the Abu Dhabi title on Wednesday.
“She gave me zero chances to come back,” Sakkari said of the match against Sabalenka. “I just couldn’t find a way. From the baseline she was dictating and playing really big.”
Kudermetova reached her first tour final after saving a set point in the tiebreaker before defeating the 18-year-old Marta Kostyuk 7-6 (10-8) 6-4.
Australian Associated Press