TennisSection previews the 2023 Hua Hin Open as Zhu Lin takes on Lesia Tsurenko in the final on Sunday, February 5, 2023.
It’s the most unexpected final at the Hua Hin Open, but both Zhu Lin and Lesia Tsurenko have done remarkably well to get here and fully merit being in the championship match. Who will walk away with the crown?
Zhu Lin is into the first WTA final of her career after outplaying her younger compatriot Xinyu Wang in Saturday’s semifinal clash at the Hua Hin Open. Lin Lin won 6-2 6-4, hardly in a spot of bother at any moment in the match. She broke Wang’s serve six times and had her measure of success on return – winning 65% of points on Wang’s first serve. With the win, Lin has now won nine of her opening 12 matches this year – it’s the best start to a season in her career and could surpass her career-high ranking of No. 54.
Lesia Tsurenko, meanwhile, sailed into her first WTA final since 2019 after Bianca Andreecu was forced to retire with a neck injury in the second semifinal. Tsurenko rallied from 3-5 down in the first set, winning an astonishing eight games on the trot. She led 7-5 4-0 when Andreescu called it quits. Tsurenko will have the chance to add to her four WTA titles when she faces Zhu Lin in Sunday’s final at the Hua Hin Open.
Lesia Tsurenko leads Zhu Lin 1-0 in their head-to-head. The Ukrainian won a second-round match against the Chinese in Dubai back in 2019. Lin has come a long way since that defeat. For Tsurenko, it’s been years of agony and persistent injuries. But both players have hit their strides in Hua Hin. Lin in particular has backed up her recent Australian Open breakthrough by looking extremely comfortable this week. Tsurenko’s experience at this level could prove telling, but Lin’s career-defining run in 2023 means that she’s got the wind in her sails to romp to her first WTA title.
Free Tennis Prediction and Pick: Zhu Lin in 3 sets
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