Carla Suarez Navarro is heading into the top 10 in the WTA world rankings…
The 26-year-old Spanish tennis player defeated Germany’s Andrea Petkovic in straight sets, 6-3, 6-3, on Thursday to reach the final of the Miami Open.
With the win, Suarez Navarro, who is now poised to break into the top 10 in the world rankings, has become the first Spanish woman in more than two decades to reach the final at the Crandon Park Tennis Center.
The last Spaniard to play for the trophy at the Miami Open was two-time champion Arantxa Sanchez Vicario in 1993. The Spaniard beat Steffi Graf in that final.
Suarez Navarro, who defeated Venus Williams in the quarterfinals, now faces another Williams: seven-time Miami Open winner Serena Williams.
Williams is bidding to win a third straight Miami title and has won her last 17 matches at the venue.
Suarez Navarro, who honed her game in the Canary Islands, came out on top in a loose match, combining with Petkovic for nearly 60 unforced errors in less than 90 minutes on court.
Suarez Navarro converted three of her 10 break point opportunities and was never in serious trouble.
“I played a good match, an important match like this is difficult,” said the winner. “I just tried to play my game and enjoy it.
“Playing this final is an important event for me. I train in the off season in hopes of playing a final like this,” added the Spaniard, whose only WTA title came in Portugal last year.
“I am playing good, I’m playing good matches here.”