Brilliant Bertens punishes error-strewn Garcia display

Caroline Garcia became the latest big name to be beaten by Kiki Bertens in the Madrid Open semi-finals on Friday.

Kiki Bertens celebrates victory   -  Getty Images

Kiki Bertens will contest her first Premier Mandatory final after extending her impressive run at the Madrid Open by beating seventh seed Caroline Garcia.

Bertens arrived in the semi-final having beaten Caroline Wozniacki and Maria Sharapova in the previous rounds, and she dominated Garcia on her way to a 6-2 6-2 win.

The world number 20 has now won 11 of her 12 matches on clay this year and will look for her second title of 2018 in Saturday's final.

Garcia was error-strewn throughout the last-four encounter, her aggressive, attacking style unable to unlock the dogged defence of rising star Bertens.

It only took the Dutchwoman three games to convert an opening, she kept the rallies alive before forcing Garcia to send a flat forehand wide.

While Garcia struggled under the pressure, Bertens revelled in it, evident by a pinpoint backhand early in the fifth that flew past her opponent at full stretch.

She led 5-2 when another forehand from Garcia failed to land inside the line, and in just over half an hour the set was wrapped up.

Her impeccable display continued early in the second set and – as in the first – within three games she had a break as more Garcia errors proved costly.

Bertens' desire to keep the point alive saw the Frenchwoman twice come to the net, but on both occasions she volleyed straight into it to offer an opening.

Garcia saved the first break point with a stunning drop-shot but she could not repeat the feat as a booming Bertens forehand proved too good.

The world number seven – who had only been broken four times in the Spanish capital before Friday – saw another service game slip by as Bertens produced an outrageous sliced drop to take a 4-1 lead.

From there it was a mere formality for Bertens, who will not be daunted by the prospect of facing Karolina Pliskova or Petra Kvitova in the final.

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