DUBAI: Top seed Justine Henin-Hardenne and fourth seed Monica Seles advanced to the final of the Dubai Open in contrasting fashion on Friday.
Henin-Hardenne struggled for two hours 25 minutes before edging third seed Jennifer Capriati 7-5, 4-6, 6-4, while a thigh injury forced defending champion Amelie Mauresmo to retire at 2-2 in the second set after Seles won the first 6-3.
Capriati pressured her Belgian opponent from beginning to end, with her blistering groundstrokes, speed around the court and placement of the ball.
But she also showed a lack of concentration and gave away points at crucial stages.
I've played a lot of tough matches against Jennifer, so I knew it could be difficult, said Henin-Hardenne. She was playing well this week, and coming back in good shape.
Despite her defeat, Capriati was satisfied with a week in which she claimed her first victories of the year.
Seles, meanwhile advanced to her second final of the year when Mauresmo was forced to retire with a right thigh injury.
Second seeded Mauresmo was playing only her second tournament in four months. Reuters