Dementieva to play for third title of 2010

Updated: February 27, 2010, 8:24 AM ET
Associated Press

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia -- Elena Dementieva defeated Sybille Bammer of Austria 6-1, 6-3 to set up an all-Russian final with first-timer Alisa Kleybanova at the inaugural Malaysian Open on Saturday.

Fourth-seeded Kleybanova beat unseeded Ayumi Morita of Japan 6-4, 6-1 in the first semifinal to reach her first career WTA final.

Top-seeded Dementeiva and Kleybanova will meet for the first time.

"I'm really looking forward to the final as I have never faced Alisa before," Dementieva said. "I think she is one of the most talented young players around ... she has a good serve and the key on Sunday is to hold on to my serve."

Dementieva will be gunning for her third title of the year, after triumphs in Sydney and Paris gave her 16 career titles.

The Russian has scythed through the draw, conceding only 15 games in four matches.

She broke Bammer five times in 16 chances and lost her own serve only once.

Dementieva won the first set in only 16 minutes, but Bammer put up a stronger fight in the rain-interrupted second set.

Kleybanova, a seventh-year pro, didn't drop serve against Morita and delivered 11 aces.

"Today my serve helped me a lot and I took advantage of it," she said. "I could relax and take more risks with my shots."


Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press

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