Dubai, United Arab Emirates (SportsNetwork.com) - Rapidly rising Czech star Karolina Pliskova secured a berth in Saturday's final at the $2.5 million Dubai Tennis Championships.
Playing through a sand storm, the 17th seed outlasted fellow rising young star Garbine Muguruza, of Spain, 6-4, 5-7, 7-5 in just under three hours in Friday's semifinal action at Aviation Club Tennis Centre.
Pliskova and Muguruza have now split two career WTA meetings.
"I feel amazing, I really didn't expect to get to the final here," Pliskova said. "We both have great serves, so it's always going to be tough to break, even if you have 0-30 or 0-40, it doesn't mean anything until you get that final point. I put everything into my serve to get that final game."
The 6-foot-1, 22-year-old Pliskova is 3-4 in her career finals, including a runner-up finish in Sydney last month. She appeared in five finals last year, going 2-3.
Pliskova will meet the Simona Halep-Caroline Wozniacki winner on Saturday. Halep was last year's French Open runner-up, while the former world No. 1 Wozniacki is the reigning U.S. Open runner-up and captured this Dubai tournament in 2011.
Halep and Wozniacki have split two career meetings.
The 2015 Dubai champion will claim $456,000.