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Tennis: Errani to face Barthel in Paris Open final

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

Top seeded Italian Sara Errani will play Germany's Mona Barthel in the final of the Paris Open after they both clinched easy semi-final victories on Saturday.

Errani was hardly tested as lucky loser Kiki Bertens of the Netherlands retired injured in the first set with a back problem when the 2012 French Open finalist was leading 5-0 and in full command.

Barthel meanwhile sailed through the first set 6-1 against Frenchwoman Kristina Mladenovic before overcoming sterner resistence to close out the match 6-4 and reach Sunday's championship match.

Errani was grateful for a short day's work after coming through a tough quarter-final on Friday when she was pushed to three sets by Spaniard Carla Suarez Navarro.

"I was really tired and I ran a lot," said Errani.

"It was a really gruelling match and it's always more difficult for me on a hard indoor court than on clay. The physio told me to take a bath in ice for 10 minutes so I could better recover but I lasted about three seconds," she joked.

As for the 21-year-old Bertens, who is Holland's highest ranked woman and is now set to break into the world's top 50, it proved a match too far after a busy schedule that saw her come through qualifying for the Australian Open before losing in the second round against Olga Savchuk of the Ukraine.

"I was in a lot of pain this morning even after hours of treatment," she explained on her lower back injury.

"I'm going to rest now for three, four or five days and then we'll see how things go."

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130202/tennis-errani-face-barthel-paris-open-final-0