Tennis: Barty halts Anisimova's dream run amid court-switch row, will play another teen Vondrousova in final

Ashleigh Barty (right) shakes hands with Amanda Anisimova after their semi-final match at the French Open on June 7, 2019.
Ashleigh Barty (right) shakes hands with Amanda Anisimova after their semi-final match at the French Open on June 7, 2019.PHOTO: REUTERS

PARIS (REUTERS, AFP) - Australian Ashleigh Barty ended 17-year-old Amanda Anisimova's amazing run at tennis' French Open to reach the final with a roller-coaster 6-7 (4-7), 6-3, 6-3 victory on Friday (June 7).

The eighth-seeded Barty, the first Australian woman to play a final here since Sam Stosur in 2010, will take on Czech teenager Marketa Vondrousova on Saturday.

"That was amazing, both good and bad," said Barty, who will rise to the top three in the rankings next week. "It was the hardest thing that I ever had to do.

"I am really proud of the way I fought especially in the conditions which were cold and windy.

"Now I can't wait for the final, it's incredible."

Anisimova, who had knocked out defending champion Simona Halep in the previous round, rallied from 5-0 down to take the opening set in a tiebreaker and open up a 3-0 lead in the second, only for the momentum to shift again in favour of Barty.

Anisimova, the first player born in the 2000s to reach the last eight or semi-finals at a Grand Slam, put up a great fight to save five match points but Barty sealed the win on court Suzanne Lenglen on her sixth in light drizzle.

Anisimova bears a striking physical resemblance to Maria Sharapova, who was the last teenager to win a Slam as a 19-year-old at the 2006 US Open. "This is more than I could have asked for," she said after reaching her first Slam semi.

The unseeded 19-year-old Vondrousova beat Britain's Johanna Konta 7-5, 7-6 (7-2), recovering from deficits in both sets to claim victory.

She became the first teenager to reach the final since Ana Ivanovic in 2007.

Konta led 5-3 in the opening set on a rainy Court Simonne-Mathieu and had three set points but allowed the 19-year-old to claw her way back.

The Briton also led 5-3 in the second set but again failed to capitalise and Vondrousova hit back to take it into a tiebreak, which she won with a superb drop shot.

Both semi-finals got under way after accusations of sexism were made against the organisers. They had decided to move the matches away from the showpiece Court Philippe Chatrier, stating they had chosen "to respect sporting fairness".

The main arena had already been scheduled to stage the men's semi-finals between Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic against Dominic Thiem.

The WTA said the decision, taken after Wednesday's play was washed out and prompted by fears of more rain on Friday, was "unfair and inappropriate".

Former world No. 1 Amelie Mauresmo of France said it was a "disgrace".

Konta, after losing, said the decision "speaks for itself" and it was "sad" that women have to "justify their involvement".

The Briton's match started at 11 am in a 5,000-seat arena which was barely half-full.

"The way it looks probably speaks for itself more than anything," she said.