Former world No. 1 Lindsay Davenport overpowered Austrian teenager Tamira Paszek in the Auckland Classic yesterday to set up a final against Aravane Rezai.
Davenport started slowly but her greater firepower took her to a 6-4, 6-3 win over the sixth seed in the semi-final of the WTA event.
Unseeded Rezai scored a 6-3, 7-5 victory over home town heroine Marina Erakovic, the first New Zealander to make the semi-finals of the Auckland event for 18 years.
Davenport took some time to settle against her 17-year-old Austrian opponent.
"She was more aggressive than I thought she would be, and she did a good job of moving me around in the beginning," Davenport said. "Luckily I was able to be a bit more aggressive and take control."
She admitted she had not yet settled back into the groove which kept her near the top of world rankings before becoming a mother.
"It has been frustrating in that regard this week," she said. "A few more balls have been flying long on me than I'm used to."
Davenport's victory adds momentum to her comeback after giving birth to her son Jagger in June.
She has won two out of her three comeback events since resuming in September and is on track to add another tournament to her 53 career singles titles ahead of the Australian Open later this month.
Against Rezai, Erakovic was unable to reproduce the form that had led to upset wins over American Ashley Harkleroad and Russian top seed and world No 22 Vera Zvonareva in earlier rounds.