Kirsty Gilmour books final rematch with European champion

Kirsty Gilmour turned in another determined display to reach the final of the women's singles at the European Championships for the second year in a row.

Kirtsy Gilmour beat sixth seed Sabrina Jaquet 22-20, 21-10. Picture: Lorraine HIll

The 2016 silver medallist defeated Switzerland’s sixth seed Sabrina Jaquet 22-20, 21-10 in 40 minutes to book a rematch with double European title-holder and Olympic champion Carolina Marin, the Spaniard who will be bidding to make it a hat-trick of world titles at Glasgow 2017 in August.

Seventh seed Gilmour secured her final place in Kolding, Denmark after a topsy-turvy first game with her Rio Olympics opponent Jaquet. But it is a great achievement considering she had a lengthy lay-off after the Olympics following knee surgery.

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Gilmour trailed for much of the opener but from 12-9 down she surged into a 15-13 lead only for Jaquet to respond with five successive points to lead 18-15 and then 19-16.

Back came Gilmour with a four-point burst to set up game point at 20-19. Jaquet saved the first but Gilmour did not let it slip when she got a second chance. A more determined Gilmour then took charge to open up an early lead in the second game as she moved from 2-2 to 6-2, and then steadily built her advantage, helped by a decisive six-point charge from 14-8 to match point before taking the contest at the third opportunity.

On the adjacent court, Marin beat Danish fourth seed Mette Poulsen 21-17, 21-12 after coming back from 15-11 in the opening game.

Marin may have won last year’s final and holds a 5-1 head-to-head lead over Gilmour but the Scot has beaten her, winning the 2014 Spanish Open final. Gilmour said of yesterday’s win: “I had the momentum and felt more and more confident from winning the first set and as the second progressed but I never lost focus. I know that no match is over until the final point is decided – not even at a ten-point lead.

“Four months after my operation I played my first tournament at the Scottish Nationals and have been on my steady way back ever since.”

As for today’s final she said: “Marin obviously will be tough but I have a plan and will watch some videos of her matches as final preparation.”