Svitolina Comeback Beats Bouchard for WTA KL Title
Former Top 10er Genie Bouchard failed to turn around a winless head-to-head against Elina Svitolina on Sunday at the BMW Malaysian Open, failing to close out a set and a break lead in falling to Ukrainian Elina Svitolina 6-7(5), 6-4, 7-5.
“Emotionally, I’m really exhausted now,” Svitolina said after clinching a fourth career crown and first of 2016. “It was a long day. The first set was really tough and she was playing really well, but I was 5-3 up, so I was disappointed to lose the first set after such a tough fight. After we stopped a couple of times because of the rain, it was up and down.”
Svitolina, buoyed by new coach and former No. 1 Justine Henin hired as part of her team, was coming off the semifinals at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships.
Bouchard was 0-3 career against Svitolina entering the match and looked in the driver’s seat after winning the first set and going up 4-2 in the second.
“Many people would think the match is over, but I like to surprise everyone,” Bouchard said with a derisive laugh afterwards. “Honestly, I was just trying to play my game. There was nothing special, just when I lost my serve I was 30-0 up, and emotionally I was struggling a bit because I lost my serve in such a big moment.”
Later Bouchard served for the match in the third set at 5-4, dropping serve at love.
Svitolina improved to a perfect 4-0 in career finals while Bouchard fell to 1-5, losing in her second final this year after Hobart. She was looking for her first title since 2014 Nurnberg.
Watson on Precipice of Top 50 After Monterrey Win
The oft-injured Heather Watson positioned herself for a move back into the Top 50 on Sunday by winning the Abierto Monterrey Afirme in Mexico, from a set down defeating Belgium’s Kirsten Flipkens 3-6, 6-2, 6-3, to win her third career title.
“Mexico, thank you; te amo!” said the Brit, who with the win rose from 84 to No. 53 on the WTA rankings. “I’m a big fan of Mexico; when I was 6 years old, we used to come to Mexico for Christmas for six years. I’m just so glad to be able to win a title here. I need to learn some more Spanish.”
After winning the second set Watson went up 3-0 in the third, eventually closing it out at 6-3.
“I was nervous coming into the match, and I’ve never beaten Kirsten before,” Watson said. “She’s a great player who really makes you work for it.”
Watson improved to a perfect 3-0 in career finals following wins at 2015 Hobart and 2012 Osaka. Flipkens fell to 1-2 in career finals, and was looking for her first title since 2012 Quebec City.
You Might Like:
Italians Vinci, Errani Head WTA Events in Malaysia, Mexico This Week
Petra Kvitova, Sam Stosur Advance In Montreal; Eugenie Bouchard v Lucie Safarova Tuesday
Justine Henin Is Back! She’s Now Coaching Elina Svitolina
Streaking Svitolina Weathers Wozniacki For 2nd 2017 Title at Dubai
Agnieszka Radwanska Beats Elina Svitolina To Win New Haven And US Open Series