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Wimbledon 2024: Jasmine Paolini Rallies Past Donna Vekic to Reach Final, Barbora Krejcikova Shows Elena Rybakina Exit Door

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Jasmine Paolini of Italy celebrates after defeating Donna Vekic of Croatia in their semifinal match at the Wimbledon tennis championships in London, Thursday, July 11, 2024. (AP Photo/Mosa'ab Elshamy)

Jasmine Paolini of Italy celebrates after defeating Donna Vekic of Croatia in their semifinal match at the Wimbledon tennis championships in London, Thursday, July 11, 2024. (AP Photo/Mosa’ab Elshamy)

Italian Paolini fought back from a set down to oust Croatian Vekic 2-6, 6-4, 7-6 (10/8) in the longest women’s final-four game at the All England Club on Thursday before Czech Krejcikova got the better of Rybakina 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 in the second semifinal to enter the summit clash.

Italy’s Jasmine Paolini reached her first Wimbledon final with a stirring fightback to beat tearful Croatian Donna Vekic 2-6, 6-4, 7-6 (10/8) on Thursday in the longest women’s semi-final at the All England Club.

Paolini had never won a main draw match at Wimbledon before this year, but the world number seven tenaciously saw off Vekic in two hours and 51 minutes on Centre Court to secure a second successive Grand Slam final appearance.

After surviving the emotional encounter with Vekic, Paolini could celebrate becoming the first Italian woman to reach the Wimbledon final.

It has been a breakthrough year for Paolini, who reached her maiden Grand Slam final at Roland Garros before losing to world number one Iga Swiatek.

Paolini, who made the Australia Open last 16 in January, had not gone past the second round in any Slam before this year.

Without a win at the All England Club heading into the tournament, Paolini now has six victories under her belt and has dropped just two sets in the process.

“The last months have been crazy for me. It is a dream. I was watching finals when I was a kid on this Wimbledon,” she said.

“You know there is no place better than here to fight for every ball and every point.

“I was struggling at the beginning. I was serving really bad, so I’m so happy. This match I will remember forever.”

Vekic paid the price for 57 unforced errors, with the semi-final fittingly ending on another wild forehand from the unseeded Croatian.

Unable to contain her frustration at letting 3-1 and 4-3 leads slip in the last set, Vekic broke down in tears in the closing stages of a rollercoaster clash.

“I was crying because I had so much pain. I didn’t know how I could keep playing,” Vekic said.

“I thought I was going to die in the third set. I had so much pain in my arm, in my leg.

“It’s tough to be positive right now. It was so close. I had a lot of chances.”

The 28-year-old Paolini will face 2021 French Open champion Barbora Krejcikova for the title on Saturday after Krejcikova eliminated 2022 Wimbledon champion Elena Rybakina 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 in the second semifinal.

Stay updated with the latest from Euro 2024. Explore Euro 2024 Match Today. Check Updated list of Highest Goal-Scorer in Euro 2024. CheckEuro 2024 Points Table and Euro 2024 Match Results and Euro 2024 Match Schedule .

(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and is published from a syndicated news agency feed – AFP)



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