Kerber back in top 20 after reaching Sydney final

Kerber back in top 20 after reaching Sydney final

Defending champion Mertens suffered a second-set blip against Watson, victor in 2015, but recovered to earn a 6-4 1-6 6-2 success. "I'm not looking back 2017 any more", Kerber, who won the Australian Open and the U.S. Open titles in 2016, said.

BC-TEN-Sydney International, 188 Angelique Kerber wins 8th match in a row, into Sydney finalAP Photo XRR129, XRR105, XRR103, XRR128Eds: With AP Photos.

"I think I shot myself in the foot with my serving in the first [set] and didn't give myself an opportunity to be dominant on service games", said Barty, who is now one win from becoming the first Australian woman to win the Sydney International since Alicia Molik in 2005. I'm trying to do my best on court and win as many matches before going to Melbourne.

"It's just the beginning of the year, so it's tough to say".

"It's nice to make a final at home, but I think in my eyes it's ideal preparation for next week", Barty said.

"Now that I am No.3 ... the first and foremost thing that I am thinking about and feel like I am capable of doing, regardless of whatever anyone else says".

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Former world number one Angelique Kerber maintained her ideal record in 2018 as she saw off Camila Giorgi in straight sets to reach the Sydney International final.

Barty, ranked nineteenth, cruised past Barbora Strycova 6-3, 6-2, while 25th-ranked Gavrilova had direct passage to the last four when Spain's Wimbledon champion Garbine Muguruza withdrew after her win over Kiki Bertens with a thigh injury. "I've had a great off-season and I'm working hard".

"It's been a pleasure playing here this week and it's nice getting a bit of confidence going into our biggest tournament for us", Barty said after the match.

De Minaur stunned fourth seed Milos Raonic in the second round on his way to reaching the Brisbane International semi-finals last week before losing to American Ryan Harrison.

Medvedev is eyeing off his first career title after toppling veteran Italian Paulo Lorenzi 6-3, 6-3.

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