Iga Swiatek was eliminated in the semi-finals in Dubai by qualifier Anna Kalinskaya | tennis

Unseeded Russian qualifier Anna Kalinskaya recorded a 6-4, 6-4 victory over top seed Iga Swiatek on Friday to advance to the final of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships.

Kalinskaya won 10 of the last 14 games and overcame five aces from Swiatek to defeat the Poland native in one hour and 41 minutes.

Kalinskaya, 25, will fight for her first WTA 1000 title alongside Italy’s Jasmine Paolini when the two meet on Saturday. Paolini won 6:2, 7:6 (6) against Sorana Cirstea from Romania. Kalinskaya and Paolini each have one win over the other, with the former recording a 6-4, 6-2 victory over the latter in the fourth round of the Australian Open in January.

Kalinskaya has had a memorable week, which included winning two matches in qualifying just to reach the main draw. She later defeated top 10 players Jelena Ostapenko of Latvia in the third round and Coco Gauff in the quarterfinals before defeating Swiatek in the semifinals.

Anna Kalinskaya had an incredible run from qualifying to the final. Photo: Robert Prange/Getty Images

“She is a great player. I know if I don’t stay calm and aggressive, she will destroy me,” Kalinskaya said of Swiatek in her court interview. “That was my plan. To stay aggressive, move her around a lot. I’m glad I won. She is unbelievable. I’m glad I had the chance to play against them. I’m sure we’ll play a lot more in the future.”

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The 28-year-old Paolini saved six set points en route to ousting Cirstea in an hour and 57 minutes. “I gave you a little bit of drama at the end of the game,” Paolini said.

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