Schiavone moves closer to seventh career title in Rio


Francesca Schiavone will meet Shelby Rogers in the Rio Open final on Sunday as she looks to end her a three-year wait for a title on the WTA Tour.

The 2010 French Open winner has not reached a final since her success in Marrakech in 2013, the last of her six career singles titles.

Schiavone will have the chance to add to that tally in Brazil after she cruised past world number 162 Petra Martic 6-3 6-3 on Saturday, the Italian avoiding the same fate as Teliana Pereira and Lara Arruabarrena against the Croat.

There was little between the pair in the opening six games, but Schiavone upped her level to win three in a row and move ahead, the former grand slam champion converting her third set point.

Schiavone had been dominant on her own first serve in the opener and that continued in the second as she wrapped up the win in 71 minutes with a service game to love.

She will meet Rogers for the first time in Sunday's showpiece event after the latter beat Sorana Cirstea 6-4 6-4 in the second semi-final.

Rogers took a scrappy opener thanks to two breaks in the opening seven games, the American turning her advantage into a 1-0 lead after allowing two set points to slip out of her grasp.

The second was also a battle and Rogers needed to battle back from 4-2 down to progress to the final, the world number 131 winning the final four games to reach the second final of her career.