Bencic, world No. 13, edged out top seed Kerber 2-6, 7-6 (2), 6-4 to set up a clash with seventh seed Sofia Kenin on Saturday. The 22-year-old Swiss will be playing in her second final of the season at the grass-court tournament, having won the third WTA title of her career at Dubai in February.
Three-time Grand Slam champion Kerber has endured a difficult year – being thrashed by the unheralded Danielle Collins at the Australian Open, losing her only 2019 final to Canadian teenager Bianca Andreescu at Indian Wells, before suffering a first-round exit against Anastasia Potapova at Roland Garros.
Earlier on Saturday, American youngster Kenin, who stunned Serena Williams at the French Open earlier this month, continued her strong form by beating Anastasija Sevastova. The 20-year-old, who won her maiden WTA title in Hobart in January, beat Latvian second seed Sevastova 6-4, 4-6, 6-2.
Kenin, ranked 30th in the world, will face Bencic for the first time on Sunday. It will be Kenin’s third final of the season, having also finished runner-up to Wang Yafan in Acapulco in March.