Pliskova to face Kerber in Eastbourne final

Karolina Pliskova will play reigning Wimbledon champion Angelique Kerber in the final of the Nature Valley International in Eastbourne.

The Czech world No. 3 raced through her semifinal against Kiki Bertens of the Netherlands, winning 6-1, 6-2 in under an hour on Friday to take her place in the final.

German world No. 5 Kerber had earlier received a walk-over win when Tunisia's Ons Jabeur retired from the tournament with injury.

Pliskova broke Bertens immediately on centre court and added a further break before closing out the first set with an ace.

She was as impressive in the second, reeling off five consecutive games before taking her second match point after just 58 minutes, and will now bid for a third title of the year as her strong run towards Wimbledon continues.

Kerber will be aiming for a first title at Eastbourne after twice returning a beaten finalist in 2012 and 2014.

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Next week, the German will face a tough draw when she defends her Wimbledon title, starting off against compatriot Tatjana Maria, with Serena Williams and new world No. 1 Ashleigh Barty possible opponents in the later rounds.

Pliskova meanwhile faces China's Lin Zhu in the first round at the All England Lawn Tennis Club.

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