Kuznetsova primed for all-Russian final
[.[views].], BY TM
Svetlana Kuznetsova is relishing the prospect of taking on fellow Russian Elena Vesnina in the BNP Paribas Open final on Sunday.
Two-time major winner Kuznetsova booked her place in the final at Indian Wells with a hard-fought 7-6(5) 7-6(2) semi-final victory over third seed Karolina Pliskova.
Vesnina had a much easier route through the final, as she needed just one hour and 25 minutes to see off French opponent Kristina Mladenovic 6-3 6-4.
Kuznetsova is now looking forward to facing her compatriot in Sunday's showpiece, admitting that she hopes the best player on the day emerges victorious.
"We've been team-mates since we were 12," said Kuznetsova about Vesnina. "It's great that it's a Russian final. I'm really happy for (Vesnina). I am looking forward to having a great game and may the best win."
The duo have met on two previous occasions on the WTA Tour, with Kuznetsova winning the most recent encounter, a straight sets triumph in the semi-finals of the WTA Estoril in 2014.
Neither player has recorded a tournament victory on the Tour in 2017, with Kuznetsova's last success coming on home soil in the Kremlin Cup last October, while Vesnina's last singles triumph was nearly four years ago at the AEGON International.