2012 $50,000 Wenshan - Saisai Zheng (China)
Zarina Diyas (Kazakhstan) vs Saisai Zheng (China)
There is not a lot between these two players other than the current WTA singles rankings of 352 and 141 respectively. Four months in terms of age, similar in height and weight (based on last measurements supplied to ITF), both play right-handed with a double handed backhand and both prefer a hard court surface. With respective career high rankings of 143 and 137, both have also reached a high level for ITF Pro Circuit play.
Their on court achievements to date are identical, both have one singles title to their name in 2012 and both have an overall record of three singles titles on the ITF Pro Circuit. Where they do differ is in singles finals contested, Zheng will be contesting her ninth final and for Diyas it will be a sixth appearance.
Zheng also has the experience of having played in eleven ITF Pro Circuit doubles finals with six titles won and also a doubles title win in 2011 on the WTA Tour. Diyas does though have experience of playing for her nation in five Fed Cup ties from 2009-11.
The two players have met once before in their careers with Zheng triumphing in a three set 36 60 64 win on the grass courts in Kurume, Japan back in May this year. The clash came at the quarterfinal stage of the tournament and Zheng would go on to win the title of this $50,000 tournament.
Coming into this final, Diyas, in her first tournament as a 19-year old having celebrated her birthday last Thursday (18th), had won three of her eight sets without loss of a game, this included a stunning 60 60 victory over Julia Glushko, the number four seed.
In fact, her third set tiebreak win in her semifinal defeat of the WTA Top 100 ranked number one seed, Kai-Chen Chang, was the only time she had conceded more than two games in a set she had won. In her four rounds of action she had lost just two sets, including a 61 loss in the opening set of the first round – although she soon turned that round to take the next two sets 61 61.
For the 18-year old second seeded Zheng, only one set had been dropped all week. That came in her quarterfinal 57 64 64 win against Zi Yang before claiming a place in Saturday’s final with a straight sets win with the loss of just three games over Caroline Garcia, the tournament’s number three seed.
This is shaping up to be a great final and a win for Diyas will see her claim her third seeded scalp of the tournament having already accounted for the fourth, fifth and first seeded players in successive rounds. Zheng will have to be on top of her game if she is to avoid the same fate of her fellow seeds.
The result of this final, scheduled for 10am local time on Saturday 27 October 2012, will be uploaded here and if you are lucky enough to be attending this final then you can always share your photos on our official Facebook page or on Twitter using #ITFprocircuit.