Krejcikova savours reaching maiden Grand Slam final
Barbora Krejcikova was keen to savour reaching her first ever Grand Slam singles final after beating Maria Sakkari 7-5 4-6 9-7 in a dramatic French Open semi-final on Thursday.
The Czech star will now face 31st seed Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova in Saturday's final and she is priced at 5/6 to complete a fairy tale few weeks in Paris by lifting the title.
It was a battling performance from the world number 33 to get past Greek ace Sakkari, who had knocked out defending champion Iga Swiatek in the previous round, as she won the contest on her fifth match point, having previously saved one during a pulsating final set.
The two players spent over three hours on court and a clearly delighted Krejcikova was keen to savour sealing her place in her first Grand Slam singles final.
"I always wanted to play a match like this," the 25-year-old told reporters after the match. "Such a challenging match where we both had our chances. We’ve both been playing so well and only one can win.
"Even if I lost today I would have been very proud of myself because I was fighting and I think that’s the most important thing."
Krejcikova had never previously been beyond the second round of a Grand Slam in the singles draw, although she has won both the French Open and Wimbledon as a doubles player.
A showdown with Pavlyuchenkova now awaits in the final, after the Russian booked her place in the showpiece with 7-5 6-3 victory over Tamara Zidansek earlier on Thursday.
Saturday's meeting will be the first time the two players have ever faced off competitively, but regardless of the outcome, there will be a new name on the trophy come the conclusion of the match.