Originally written on Tennis Panorama  |  Last updated 11/8/14
Jie Zheng of China serves to Andrea Petkovic of Germany on day 4 in the Grandstand at the U.S. Open Tennis Championships Stadium at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in New York City on September 1, 2011. UPI/John Angelillo



By Stephanie Neppl

China’s Zheng Jie came back from a 0-5 deficit in the first set to defeat #3 seed Svetlana Kuznetsova of Russia to reach the final of the ASB Classic.

The Russian raced to a big lead before Zheng Jie started to play herself into the match. She told herself, “I don’t want to finish like this” and vowed to keep fighting. Soon, she started to find her shots and played more aggressively. The #3 seed took the first set 6-2 but Zheng was playing better and soon took the lead in the second set. She started to win the long rallies and Kuznetsova didn’t appear to be moving with the same spring in her step. The Russian blamed a bit of tightness and not fitness for the change but Zheng took advantage and won the second set 6-3. She continued to dictate play in the third and raced to a 5-1 lead. Then, she said she got nervous and Kuznetsova fought back to 5-3 before Zheng Jie closed out the match 2-6 6-3 6-3.

Kuznetsova said she was impressed by Zheng’s play. ““My opponent played a great match – the best match I’ve seen her play.” She said she was disappointed, but not in her result. “It’s a very good start to the season. I had bigger expectations – not in results but in my game.”

Zheng will face Italy’s Flavia Pennetta in the final who says she “played a perfect match” against German Angelique Kerber. Pennetta, a finalist in 2010, said she certainly had thoughts in her mind about her loss to Kerber in last year’s US Open semifinals and was surprised how quick her win was today. Kerber never got into the match and lost under an hour, 6-1 6-2.

Stephanie Neppl in Auckland, New Zealand covering the ASB Classic for the tournament web site. She is the Social Media Manager for Tennis Auckland covering the ASB Classic and Heineken Open.

Follow the ASB Classic on their web site http://www.asbclassic.co.nz/, twitter https://twitter.com/#!/ASBClassicAuckland and Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/ASBClassic.

Women’s Singles – Semifinals
J Zheng (CHN) d [3] S Kuznetsova (RUS) 26 63 63
[4] F Pennetta (ITA) d A Kerber (GER) 61 62

Women’s Doubles – Semifinals
[3] A Hlavackova (CZE) / L Hradecka (CZE) d [1] K Peschke (CZE) / K Srebotnik (SLO) 64 60
[4] J Goerges (GER) / F Pennetta (ITA) d [2] S Mirza (IND) / E Vesnina (RUS) 26 76(2) 11-9



CENTRE COURT start 1:00pm
[4] F Pennetta (ITA) vs J Zheng (CHN) – SINGLES FINAL
[3] A Hlavackova (CZE) / L Hradecka (CZE) vs [4] J Goerges (GER) / F Pennetta (ITA) – DOUBLES FINAL – after suitable rest



$ 398,250.00

ALBANY 1 start 10:00am
Qualifying – A Falla (COL) vs I Cervantes-Huegun (ESP)
Qualifying – [WC] D King-Turner (NZL) vs J Marti (ESP)
Qualifying – R De Voest (RSA) vs J Statham (NZL)
Qualifying – D Kudla (USA) vs A Sitak (NZL)


ALBANY 3 start 10:00am
Qualifying – S Bohli (SUI) vs I Van der Merwe (RSA)
Qualifying – A Mannarino (FRA) vs E Schwank (ARG)
Qualifying – [WC] S Lavie (NZL) vs [WC] A Bettink (NZL)

Not before 5:30pm

Qualifying – F Cipolla (ITA) vs [WC] J Grinter (NZL)


ALBANY 5 start 10:00am
Qualifying – A Gonzalez (COL) vs M Lammer (SUI)
Qualifying – J Levine (USA) vs T Kamke (GER)
Qualifying – R Mello (BRA) vs M Daniell (NZL)

Not before 4:00pm
Qualifying – D Hrbaty (SVK) vs P Riba (ESP)


ALBANY 7 start 10:00am
Qualifying – A Brugues-Davi (ESP) vs J Sousa (POR)
Qualifying – Y Mertens (BEL) vs P Duclos (CAN)
Qualifying – T Yang (TPE) vs B Paire (FRA)
Qualifying – L Dlouhy (CZE) vs F Bagnis (ARG)

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