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Holger Rune and Elena Rybakina lead Brisbane International Finals

<p>While first seed Holger Rune fought her way through to the men’s final, world number four Elena Rybakina performed a serving masterclass on Saturday as she advanced to the Brisbane International women’s final. The Kazakh player Rybakina, who was born in Russia, defeated Linda Noskova, a young girl from the Czech Republic, 6-3, 6-2, breaking her opponent twice in the opening set. Rybakina, the 2022 Wimbledon winner, has advanced to the final without dropping a set and has been building towards the Australian Open, where she finished second to Aryna Sabalenka the previous year.</p>
<p><img decoding=”async” class=”alignnone wp-image-341884″ src=”https://www.theindiaprint.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/theindiaprint.com-download-2024-01-06t165257.503.jpg” alt=”theindiaprint.com download 2024 01 06t165257.503″ width=”839″ height=”470″ title=”Holger Rune and Elena Rybakina lead Brisbane International Finals 3″ srcset=”https://www.theindiaprint.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/theindiaprint.com-download-2024-01-06t165257.503.jpg 300w, https://www.theindiaprint.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/theindiaprint.com-download-2024-01-06t165257.503-150×84.jpg 150w” sizes=”(max-width: 839px) 100vw, 839px” /></p>
<p>The second seed added, “I didn’t think I would play that well this week,” and disclosed that she had been ill before to traveling to Brisbane. “It’s an amazing start to the year for me.”</p>
<p>She reached her 15th WTA Tour final after hitting 26 winners and just 10 unforced mistakes against Noskova, making up 75% of her first serves.</p>
<p>She will face the victor of first seed Sabalenka vs former world no. 1 Victoria Azarenka, an all-Belarusian match.</p>
<p>While Rybakina has defeated Azarenka in their two prior confrontations, she has fallen short against Sabalenka in five of their seven meetings.</p>
<p>A year earlier, at the Australian Open, Rybakina faced Sabalenka in three sets in all but two of their matches.</p>
<p>Rune of Denmark advanced after defeating Roman Safiullin, who was ranked unranked, 6-4, 7-6 (7/0).</p>
<p>The eighth-ranked player in the world was able to take in the Russian’s heavy hitting, which included 27 clean hits and 28 unintentional mistakes.</p>
<p>Rune defeated Safiullin on his first service game to win the first set. The Russian got the better of the second set but lost badly in the tiebreak.</p>
<p>Rune will play either second-seeded Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria or Jordan Thompson of Australia in the Sunday final. Thompson defeated Rafael Nadal in a thrilling quarterfinal on Friday.</p>

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