Surface: hard (Plexicushion)
Kim Clijsters defeated Justine Henin, topping the former fellow No. 1 and fellow Belgian 6-3, 4-6, 7-6(6), saving two match points to capture the title at the WTA stop in Brisbane. Afterwards Henin said she injured her left upper leg midway through the third set, and has subsequently pulled out of Sydney next week. Clijsters led by a set and 4-1 before being forced to come back from 3-5 down in the third.
“I think we set the bar for pretty high for ourselves for the rest of the year but obviously it’s a great tournament to start off the year and a great match, so I couldn’t be happier with myself, but I would also like to congratulate Justine,” Clijsters told the crowd afterwards. “This is the first tournament that she’s back and she’s really played at a really high level.” Clijsters donated her $37,000 winner’s check to the Royal Brisbane Hospital children’s wing, which she visited before the tournament began.
AUCKLAND, New Zealand
Belgian Yanina Wickmayer, who dodged a suspension sought by the Belgian tennis federation for multiple missed tests of the drug testing “whereabouts” rule, got her season off to a flying start with a 6-3, 6-2 victory over top seed Flavia Pennetta in the Auckland final.
“Flavia made me play my best tennis,” Wickmayer said. “I’m happy the way everything turned out. This week will stay in my heart and soul for the rest of my life.” Wickmayer improved to 3-2 in career finals, while Pennetta fell to 8-10. “She was too good today. She played unbelievable,” Pennetta said. “I didn’t think I played that badly.”
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