By Ros Satar
(June 21, 2013) EASTBOURNE, England –
Jamie Hampton def. Caroline Wozniacki 6-7(8), 7-5, 6-3
Qualifier, Jamie Hampton is hunting for her maiden WTA tour title, after scoring another good win in the Aegon International, Eastbourne.
Hampton started strongly, taking the initiative early, but Wozniacki dragged the first set into a tiebreak.
Momentum again looked to be with the American, but set points went begging partly down to two outlandishly missed volleys.
Suddenly the Dane was in the driver’s seat, rounding out the first set 10-8 in the tiebreak.
It was all looking like a formality, as Wozniacki’s experience seemed to serve her better in the blustery conditions.
But Hampton fought back to break as Wozniacki was serving for the match at 5-4.
Hampton had her tail up and broke again to take the match into a decider.
Wozniacki broke early in the third set, only to lose the advantage immediately, and in a match that had seen swings of momentum throughout, it was Hampton who nudged ahead.
Serving for the match at 5-3, Wozniacki saved one match point, but there were no mistakes on the second as Hampton put a volley slap bang in the corner of the court.
Wozniacki could only wryly smile as the American qualifier reaches her first tour final.
It seemed less like a sleepy seaside town and more like playing in the middle of a tornado at times.
Hampton joked about the conditions in her post match press conference:
“Conditions are a little rougher than everywhere else, but you guys make up for it with the nice courts.”
Although mindful that she has a shot at her maiden title tomorrow, Hampton could not resist a peek at the Wimbledon draw, where she will face fellow American Sloane Stephens.
“It’s a bit of a bummer that two Americans have to play first round considering we both had great French Opens, but I’m going to treat it just like every other match.”
Elena Vesnina def. Yanina Wickmayer 6-2, 6-0
Hampton will face Russia’s Elena Vesnina, who overcame Yanina Wickmayer rather easily than she anticipated.
Wickmayer handed over two breaks of serve, and called down her coach after losing the first set.
However, it seemed to do her no good at all as she did not register another game for the rest of the match.
“I was expecting it’s going to be very long and difficult match for both of us.
“I think after first set she kind of lose her concentration, and it looks like she didn’t know what to do,” said Vesnina after the match.
Looking ahead to tomorrow’s final, the Russian had been playing some attention to Hampton’s progress through the tournament this week.
“It’s going to be very interesting match, I think. Jamie is a very talented player. It’s her first final.
“I’m pretty sure she’s very excited about that.”
Wickmayer had taken out two top ten players this week, first dispatching Petra Kvitova and then Maria Kirilenko, both in three-setters.
But there was none of that fight left in her today, leaving Vesnina looking to follow up her own maiden title from Hobart this year.
Ros Satar is a British Journalist – an IT journalist by day, and a sports journalist in all the gaps in between. She’s covering the AEGON International this week as media for Tennis Panorama News. Follow her tournament updates on twitter @TennisNewsTPN. Follow her personal twitter at @rfsatar.