Team WTAworld, Senior Member
Magdalena Maleeva, the former world number four, came back from a set down against unseeded Stephanie Foretz to reach the semi-finals of the DFS Classic in Birmingham.
It was third time lucky for the third-seeded Bulgarian, who fell at the quarter-final hurdle in each of her two previous visits to Edgbaston.
Maleeva, 28, who had gained straight-sets wins in each of her three previous meetings with her French opponent, won 6-7 (5-7) 6-2 6-3 but took an hour to find her rhythm against a player 76 places lower in the world rankings.
Foretz, who knocked out number eight seed Elena Likhovtseva in the second round, broke Maleeva in the opening game and had a point for a 3-0 lead.
Maleeva just did enough to get back into the first set, coming from 0-40 down in the eighth game to break back, but suffered the only mini break of the tie-break to lose it 7-5.
The often wayward Maleeva squandered more break points in the second set as Foretz lifted her game on the big points but somehow won 6-2.
Both girls then struggled to hold serve in the final set but the decisive break came in the seven the game and Maleeva achieved a second break two games later to secure a marathon victory.