Danielle Collins, the highest seed at the Palermo made it to the final on Saturday. The American defeated fourth seed Shuai Zhang 6-4, 6-3 in their semi-final.
Collins needed an hour and 15 minutes to complete the win. She won 76% of her first-serve points to Zhang’s 60%. Collins also won 56% of her second-serve points to her Chinese opponent’s 47%. 27-year-old faced six break points, all of which came in the first set and saved five of these. In contrast, she capitalised on three of the five break points, she had on Zhang’s serve. The world no. 44 finished the match with 66 points to Zhang’s 50.
Palermo Open: Milestones await Danielle Collins, Elena-Gabriela Ruse
In the final, Collins will play Elena-Gabriela Ruse. The Romanian qualifier took out sixth seed Oceane Dodin in their semi-final. Ruse dropped the opening set but got the better of the Frenchwoman in the latter two sets to power through 6-7(4), 7-6, 6-1 after two hours and 59 minutes.
Dodin won more points off her first serves as compared to Ruse – 64% to the latter’s 57%. However, she also struggled to win points off her second serves. In comparison to her opponent winning 53% of her second-serve points, Dodin could manage to win just 27% off her second serves. Ruse saved six of the 12 break points, she faced. In turn, she also made good of eight of the 26 break-point opportunities she had on Dodin’s serve. Ruse finished with 135 points, 20 more than Dodin’s 115.
The Palermo Open final between Danielle Collins and Elena-Gabriela Ruse is the second meeting between the two in two weeks. Earlier, Ruse had defeated Collins in the quarter-final of the Hamburg Open en route to her first WTA title win. Meanwhile, while this Ruse’s reached the second final of her career, Collins’ made it to her first WTA final. If she wins the title, she’ll become the 14th first-time titlist of the 2021 season.