Czech Republic’s Karolina Pliskova piped Belarusian second seed Aryna Sabalenka on Thursday to book a spot in her first Wimbledon final. After going down 5-7 in the first set, Pliskova held her nerve, responding with two 6-4 in the next two to secure a memorable comeback win. 

With the victory, the 29-year-old Czech will now face world number one Ashleigh Barty, who defeated 2018 Wimbledon winner Angelique Kerber in the other semi-final, in the showpiece final on Saturday. 

Born on March 21, 1992, Pliskova showed sparks of possessing an incredible tennis prowess from a very early age. In 2010, she won the Australian Open junior’s title.

After a successful stint at the junior’s level, Pliskova qualified for her first senior Grand Slam tournament main draw in the 2012 French Open. However, she was outed by Marion Bartoli in the very first set in straight sets.

The Czech had the first taste of silverware in the WTA Tour title at the Malaysian Open. In the finale, she defeated American Bethanie Mattek-Sands, defeating her in three sets.  

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Known for her powerful serve and forehand, Pliskova has also ventured into doubles where she won her first WTA title alongside her twin sister Kristyna. They were the first set of twins in history to win a doubles title together on the tour.

However, her breakthrough year came in 2014, when she finished on a high and was ranked No. 24 in the world. She also won three WTA doubles titles.

Pliskova had already started making all the right kinds of noise and in 2015, in Brisbane International, she defeated former world No. 1 and two-time Grand Slam champion, Victoria Azarenka, in the first round before losing in the second.

Soon she reached her first WTA Premier-level final at the Apia International Sydney, defeating Carla Suárez Navarro and Angelique Kerber before losing to fellow Czech, Petra Kvitová, in two tie-breaking sets.

Aided by the run, she broke into the world’s Top 20 for the first time in her career.  And after plenty more inspiring runs, she ended the year just one short of the Top 10 rankings.

In 2016, she had one of the finest seasons, finishing world No. 6 and winning two WTA titles at Nottingham and Cincinnati.

On July 17, 2017, Pliskova reached the WTA world No. 1 ranking for the first time in her career, winning three WTA titles at Brisbane, Doha and Eastbourne. Since 2013 she has won at least one title every year. Till now she has won 

16 singles and five doubles titles on the WTA tour, 10 singles and six doubles titles on the ITF Circuit.