Zheng to meet Paolini in Palermo Open final

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PALERMO, Sicily — Rising Chinese player Zheng Qinwen will face local favorite Jasmine Paolini in the Palermo Open final on Sunday aiming for the first title of her career.

The second-seeded Zheng beat Mayar Sherif 6-4, 4-6, 6-1 after the fifth-seeded Paolini backed up her win over top-seeded Daria Kasatkina by defeating Sara Sorribes Tormo 7-6 (6), 6-0 on the red clay courts of the Country Time Club.

Paolini claimed her only WTA title at Portoroz, Slovenia, in 2021.

At No. 26, Zheng is China’s top player, while Paolini is No. 52. A year ago, Zheng was No. 47.

The 20-year-old Zheng is coached by Wim Fissette, who previously worked with Kim Clijsters, Victoria Azarenka, Simona Halep, Angelique Kerber and Naomi Osaka.

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