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Robson sweeps into girls' final

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Laura Robson completed her impressive march to the Wimbledon girls final

By Chris Bevan
BBC Sport at Wimbledon


Britain's Laura Robson produced another sizzling performance to beat Romana Tabakova and book her place in the final of the Wimbledon girls' singles.

Robson, 14, overpowered the 17-year-old Slovakian in the first set and dropped just four points on her own serve.

The Londoner made more mistakes at the start of the second set but recovered from going a break down to seal an impressive 6-2 7-5 victory.

Robson plays Thai third seed Noppawan Lertcheewakarn in Saturday's final.

"I think I will be quite nervous but I'm just going to try and put that in the back of my head," said the Briton afterwards.

"I didn't think I would get to the final at the start of the week. I've had some good results in the past three or four months, so it was kind of expected, just not this soon I think."

It's really, really good, an overwhelming experience

Laura Robson

Lertcheewakarn, who beat Britain's Naomi Broady in the quarter-finals, overcame Belgium's Tamaryn Hendler 7-6 (7-2) 6-3 in her semi-final.

A large crowd had gathered on Court Three to watch Robson, whose unexpected run has put her in the spotlight, and they were not disappointed.

She was simply too strong for Tabakova and was also far more consistent.

Robson banged down one serve of 108mph in the first set and, although the Slovakian bettered that with an effort of 115mph, her delivery was generally all over the place.

At one stage in the second set, Tabakova resorted to an underarm serve and, while that won her the game, she was only delaying the inevitable.

606: DEBATE
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"That was the first time I've ever seen that in my life," said Robson. "But it worked, so fair play to her. But I don't think the crowd liked it very much.

"After that point, I was just thinking, if she's that desperate, I must be in a good situation."

Robson had run away with the first set in just 27 minutes, mainly thanks to her sweeping forehand.

She did not have things all her own way in the second set but, once she broke back to level it at 3-3, she resumed control.

Tabakova was the elder and taller of the two by some distance but Robson already has a winning temperament and, although one match point came and went at 5-4, she kept her focus and soon wrapped up her win.

"I think going for winners was kind of what I was trying to do," said Robson.

"I think staying in a rally with her wouldn't have been a really good idea because she had a really strong backhand. But I just kind of went for everything, and it did work."

And of the sudden media and public interest in her, the 14-year-old added: "It's just an overwhelming experience. There were so many people watching me today. The crowd and the support is really, really good.

"I try not to think about it too much but it's nice in a way because that means that everyone's thinking you are really good. So I'll take it as a compliment really."


see also
Robson flies flag for Britain
03 Jul 08 |  Tennis


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