Kvitova reaches Prague Open final

A first-set comeback inspired Petra Kvitova to a semi-final victory over Zhang Shuai at the Prague Open.

Czech Republic's Petra Kvitova.   -  Getty Images

Petra Kvitova pulled off a sensational first-set comeback on her way to qualifying for the Prague Open final on Friday.

Trailing 5-1 in a tie-break against Zhang Shuai, the two-time Wimbledon champion rallied to steal the opener before wrapping up a 7-6 (8-6) 6-0 victory in emphatic fashion.

The home favourite fired 37 winners to set up a final against Mihaela Buzarnescu in the Czech capital.

"I was a better player for one hour and almost lost the [first] set," Kvitova said.

"This would have been extremely difficult for my head to cope with.

"I started the tie-break very badly. I missed two returns, played poorly. I tried to calm myself after it and tried to play a bit softer.

"I knew I wouldn't get some aces from her, so I knew I still would have chances."

Buzarnescu reached the final by fighting back from a set down to beat Camila Giorgi 4-6 6-3 7-5.

At the Grand Prix de SAR La Princesse Lalla Meryem in Morocco, Elise Mertens marched into the final with a 6-0 6-2 win against Hsieh Su-wei.

Mertens will now meet Ajla Tomljanovic – a 7-5 6-2 victor over seventh seed Aleksandra Krunic – in the final.