A Sydney-born British star is all that stands in the way of Agnieszka Radwanska lifting her second Sydney International crown.
Radwanska on Friday night will face off against world No.9 Johanna Konta, just three months after easily toppling her in the decider of the China Open in Beijing.
Konta, who reached the semi-finals of the Australian Open last year, was born in Sydney but moved to England at age 14 and was granted British citizenship in 2012.
She will meet 2013 champion Radwanska, who showed no mercy on Thursday for a tired Barbora Strycova, winning 6-1 6-2 in 76 minutes.
Radwanska admitted she might have been helped by Strycova's marathon three-hour victory over Caroline Wozniacki during Wednesday's 40-degree heatwave.
Radwanska v Konta. Image: Getty
"I think you have to ask her, but I think so. I think she played an unbelievable match against 'Caro' in this kind of heat. I think there were almost four hours on court with the break," she said.
"I would say thanks to Caro."
The unseeded Strycova has lost seven straight matches against Radwanska. She didn't hold serve until the fifth game of the second set.
"Sometimes, you have these kind of head-to-heads. It's surprising because she's really playing good tennis and improving, as well, a lot. I think it just suits my game," Radwanska said.
"I really like to play in Australia. I love the courts. I feel comfortable here and in Melbourne. I'm just very happy to make another final, especially here when it's always (a) very strong tournament."
A title win three days out from the Australian Open would also justify the decision by the world No.3 to change racquets for the new season as she attempted to break her grand slam drought.
The one-time Wimbledon finalist, who has won her past six finals on tour, has impressed in Melbourne throughout her career but has never reached the final.
Desperate to improve a record that includes four quarter-final losses and two semi-final defeats at Melbourne Park, Radwanska recently switched frames from Babolat to Srixon.
"I think I'm playing a bit deeper and the ball is going a little bit better," he said.
"So that's the difference that I notice. I think we will see in a couple of weeks - it's still early. But so far, it's going good."
Konta, who beat Australia hope Daria Gavrilova earlier in the week, progressed after continuing Eugenie Bouchard's year-long drought of tour finals with a 6-2 6-2 landslide.
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