Pliskova and Riske reach Nottingham final


Karolina Pliskova and Alison Riske will contest the Nottingham Open final after coming through two matches apiece on a hectic penultimate day of action.

Rain ensured that Riske and Anett Kontaveit were the only players able to take to the court on Friday, the American opening up a 5-3 lead in the first set.

Riske duly got the better of Kontaveit 24 hours later, prevailing 6-3 6-3, and then recorded a 6-1 7-5 victory over Zheng Saisai to reach her second final in 2016.

Zheng had overcome home favourite Tara Moore to make the last four, but was left with too much to do on her return to action as Riske moved a set and 5-2 up before overcoming a late wobble that saw her twice fail to serve out the match.

Having come through two tie-breaks to beat Ashleigh Barty earlier in the day, Pliskova enjoyed a much more comfortable victory in her semi-final.

The Czech thrashed Monica Puig 6-2 6-2, Pliskova winning a remarkable 96 per cent of points behind her first serve with the aid of nine aces.