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Barty barrels into Sydney final

The Associated Press

Ashleigh Barty hits a backhand to Kiki Bertens during their women’s semifinal at the Sydney International on Friday.

The Associated PressSYDNEY (AP) — Ashleigh Barty continued her strong run at the Sydney International with a semifinal win over Kiki Bertens, beating the Dutch player 6-7 (4-7), 6-4, 7-5 Friday.

Barty withstood 15 aces from Bertens in the 2-hour 18-minute match to advance to her second consecutive final in Sydney. She plays two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova or Serbian qualifier Aliaksandra Sasnovich in Saturday’s final. Kvitova and Sasnovich played later Friday.

After beating 2017 French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko in the first round, Barty has defeated No. 1 Simona Halep, the 12th-ranked Elise Mertens and Bertens.

“It’s amazing — it truly has been a phenomenal week of tennis,” Barty said. “I feel like I’ve played great the whole week. I’ve had tough opponents every single round and I’m really excited to have another shot at the title.”

Sandgren, Norrie set up clash

AUCKLAND (AP) — American Tennys Sandgren is heading into the Australian Open in career-best form after beating Philipp Kohlschreiber to reach the final of the ASB Classic.

Sandgren beat former champion Kohlschreiber 6-4, 6-2 to reach his second ATP Tour final, after losing to compatriot Steve Johnson in the final of the U.S. Men’s Clay Court Championships last April.

His opponent in Saturday’s final will be British wild card Cameron Norrie who reached his first ATP final with a 7-5, 4-6, 6-3 win over Germany’s Jan-Lennard Struff.

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