MOSCOW, October 20, 2018
Karen Khachanov and Adrian Mannarino will compete in Sunday’s men’s singles final of the VTB Kremlin Cup. No. 3 seed Khachanov emerged victorious from the all-Russian affair with fellow Moscow native and second seed Daniil Medevedev 6-1, 6-7(5), 6-3 on Saturday evening.
Khachanov didn’t face a break point, capitalizing on three of his own six chances to prevail after one hour and 46 minutes.
“I think it’s a great result for me. It’s my first final at the Kremlin Cup. Finally, I made it, and it was especially nice to play in front of such a crowd,” Khachanov said. “It’s tough to play against Daniil on court because we are good friends. He’s having a good season, showing good results this year… I’m happy I won. It’s one of those matches that we will be playing many more down the road.”
Khachanov will face Mannarino, who will appear in his sixth final on the ATP World Tour, seeking his first trophy. The 30-year-old Frenchman edged past Italy’s Andreas Seppi 7-5, 7-5 in one hour and 33 minutes. Khachanov has won the pair’s two previous meetings.
Kasatkina triumphs on home soil
Earlier in the day, home favourite Daria Kasatkina clinched her second WTA title, her first on home soil. The 21-year-old Russian rallied past first-time finalist Ons Jabeur of Tunisia 2-6, 7-6(3), 6-4.
Kasatkina fought back from a set and a break down in the second to complete the turnaround after two hours and two minutes. The Togliatty native collects $162,010 in prize mony as well as 470 WTA-Ranking points breaking in the top-10 for the first time in her career.
— WTA (@WTA) 20. Oktober 2018
“It was a very important moment, I always dreamed of winning the Kremlin Cup at the «Olimpiyskiy» Stadium. And that happened, I managed to jump on the bandwagon at the 11th hour. I’m so happy,” Kasatkina stated.
“I really wanted to win, it leads to such moments when you want so much, but you cannot. You start to get nervous, expect something from yourself. But in the end, my magic coach came on court (laughter) and helped me again. Just gave me some basic tactics that I can always use, I just needed to be reminded of it. I started to play in defense, did not invent anything special, I was just trying to play a solid game, using mostly my backhand.”
Right after the final Kasatkina took a flight to Singapore, being an alternate at the BNP Paribas WTA Finals presented by SC Global.
“I don’t know what to expect yet. It seems to me that they will carry me to the plane to Singapore and say: “Fly!”. On the connecting flight they will say: “Sit down here, fly there!”. We’ll see how it goes. I plan to do nothing for two days. And then we’ll see how they will play, maybe someone will pull out.”