Mauresmo makes it

Mauresmo makes it
By Reuters

11/11/2006 at 16:04Updated

Amelie Mauresmo outlasted Kim Clijsters in an epic second semi-final at the WTA Tour Championship in Madrid to clinch a 6-2 3-6 6-3 victory.

Mauresmo, who went into the event as the top-ranked woman in the world, got the better of two-times winner Clijsters in a titanic struggle at the Madrid Arena.

There was nothing to separate the two players until Mauresmo got the crucial break in the deciding set to go 5-3 up after a failed line-call challenge from Clijsters, and she then served out for victory to give her a chance to defend her title.

Mauresmo won the last four games of the final set as she recovered from a Clijsters break to love which had given the Belgian a 3-2 lead for what was her first lead of the entire match.

Mauresmo's response to that set back was stunning as she broke also managed to break Clijsters to love, before winning the next three games to take the match.

It was also a stunning comeback for the Frenchwoman who had lost her opening match of the week in straight sets against Nadia Petrova.

"I'm very proud with way I have hung in there all week," she said.

"All week my game has just got better and better and tonight I am just going to relax, have a massage and just get ready for the match tomorrow"

Mauresmo will now play Justine Henin-Hardenne in the final, after the pint-sized Belgian produced a stunning performance to beat Maria Sharapova 6-2 7-6.