Dudi Sela 370.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Dudi Sela and Amir Weintraub will face off for the Israel title for a fifth straight year in the final of the national championships in Ra’anana on Friday.
Sela, ranked No. 73 in the world, and Weintraub (189) have split the last four national titles, with the latter lifting the trophy last year and in 2010 and the former winning in 2009 and 2011.
The 28-year-old Sela dropped just three games on his way to the final on Thursday, beating Dekel Bar (889) 6-2, 6-1. Weintraub defeated Bar Botzer (596) 6-3, 6-4.
“For me this is an excellent tournament with which to prepare for the Australian Open,” said Sela. “I’m feeling good physically and I’m an experienced player. I’m at a much better place this year.”
Weintraub can’t wait for the final against Sela.
“We bring the best out of each other,” he said. “This is only the warm-up to the season and it helps us build confidence.”
Sela will be hoping to complete a local double after winning the doubles tournament with coach Yoav Shav on Thursday.
Julia Glushko (91) will be a firm favorite to lift the women’s title for the second time in three years on Friday, with Shahar Pe’er missing the tournament through injury.
Glushko has dropped just five games in her three matches in Ra’anana so far, beating Avital Weisbuch 6-0, 6-0 in the semifinals on Thursday. She will face Ofri Lankri in the final, who beat Keren Shlomo (480) 6-2, 6-4 on Thursday despite retiring last year.