Watson into first final

Heather Watson beat Misaki Doi to reach her first WTA final in Osaka

Heather Watson beat Misaki Doi to reach her first WTA final in Osaka

First published in National Sport News © by

Great Britain's Heather Watson reached her first ever singles final on the WTA Tour at the HP Open in Osaka.

The 20-year-old from Guernsey beat Japan's Misaki Doi in two tight sets to set up a clash with either top seed Sam Stosur or Kai-Chen Chang of Chinese Taipei, who knocked out Watson's fellow Briton Laura Robson on Friday

Each player broke serve once in the opening set before Watson prevailed 7/2 in a tie-break.

But like Watson's quarter-final win over Pauline Parmentier, the second set was littered with service breaks - an area Watson will surely have to improve on in the final, particularly if her opponent turns out to be the big-hitting Stosur.

Watson finally came through with a late fourth break against three for her opponent, wrapping up a 7-6 (7/2) 7-5 win in just over two hours.

Watson's run to the final follows that of Robson in Guangzhou recently, the first tour finals for British women since 1990 - Jo Durie's achievement coming before either Watson or Robson was born. Should she win on Sunday, it would be the first title for a British woman since Sara Gomer won the Northern California Open in 1988.

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