Paolini to face Swiatek in French Open final


Jasmine Paolini crushed Russian teenager Mirra Andreeva 6-3 6-1 to cruise into the French Open final and continue Italy's Roland Garros fairytale.

The diminutive 28-year-old is the first Italian player to reach the final on the Paris clay since doubles partner Sara Errani in 2012, and her resounding victory came two days after compatriot Jannik Sinner made it to the last four in the men's draw, guaranteeing he would be world number one next week.

Paolini, who used her booming forehand to devastating effect on court Philippe Chatrier, will face the ultimate challenge in Iga Swiatek, after the world number one and two-time defending champion made light work of Coco Gauff in the other semi-final.

Andreeva, who had won her previous match against Paolini in Madrid in April, failed to make the most of the few opportunities she had, and made too many unforced errors to stand a chance in what was both players' first appearance in a Grand Slam semi-final.

Earlier in the day, Swiatek took a big step towards a third successive French Open title by dismantling teary American third seed Gauff 6-2 6-4 to match her longest winning streak on clay.

Four-times Grand Slam champion Swiatek also extended her dominance over Gauff by sealing an 11th victory in 12 meetings.

Defeat was a big blow for Gauff, who was beaten by Swiatek in the 2022 final as well as last year's quarter-finals, but she leaves Paris knowing that she will climb to number two in the world rankings on Monday.

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