PARIS – Kim Clijsters will face Petra Kvitova in the final of the Open Gaz de France on Sunday.
Clijsters, who will be ranked No. 1 on Monday, defeated Kaia Kanepi of Estonia 6-1, 7-5 on her third match point. Kvitova cruised past Bethanie Mattek-Sands of the United States 6-2, 6-0 in the other semifinal on Saturday.
"I played aggressive, went for the line and tried to make her move," Clijsters said.
Kvitova broke Mattek-Sands' serve three times in each set and wrapped up the victory in just 59 minutes with the help of powerful serves.
The 20-year-old Kvitova was a quarterfinalist at the Australian Open, while Clijsters won the event for her fourth major title. Kvitova is aiming for her third career title and Clijsters goes for her 42nd.
Clijsters took a 4-0 lead before Kanepi won a game. Clijsters dropped her serve three times in a scrappy second set and trailed 4-2 and 5-4 with Kanepi serving. But the Belgian rallied to win the next three games.
Clijsters leads the overall series against Kvitova 2-0. She beat her twice last year without dropping a set. The second victory came on her way to winning the U.S. Open title for the third time.
"Over the last few months she's been able to stay a little more consistent," Clijsters said. "When I played her at the U.S. Open, she was really on (form) three games in a row ... (opening) up the court with that slice out wide with the serve.
"But then she could also make so many unforced errors and rush into it."
Kvitova won a title this year in Brisbane, Australia.
"I played my best match of the week. I was focused on every point," Kvitova said of her win against Mattek-Sands. "I was in the final in Brisbane, but this is a bigger final and I'm looking forward to it."