While American CoCo Vandeweghe dismissed her success all week on her least-favorite surface at the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix, her desire for a first claycourt title was evident in her courtside tears after she fell 7-6(2), 6-4 to former No. 1 Karolina Pliskova in the Stuttgart final on Sunday.
It was the first title of the year for Pliskova, who at 0-2 down in the first set tiebreak reeled off seven straight points. Late in the second set she made it interesting, giving up her serve with some sloppy play and double faults, but was able to close it out serving at 5-4.
It was the 10th career win for Pliskova, who improved to 10-10 in career finals, winning her last four.
Her lone claycourt title prior was in 2015 at Prague.
Vandeweghe was appearing in her career-first claycourt final, and looked to be in prime position for a first title on the dirt when she broke Pliskova for a 2-0 lead in the opening set.
“I was climbing my way back in the second set, but she hit an ace on her second serve. That’s too good,” Vandeweghe said afterwards. “Sometimes, your opponent plays too good. The only thing I know is I gave everything I had out there today and I tried to change it up every once in a while, tried to hustle down extra balls, I missed a few volleys that I probably would like to have back. I’m very proud of my performance.”
Vandeweghe during the week had three Top 10 wins, including upending world No. 1 Simona Halep. She fell to 2-4 in career finals.
Pliskova now travels to Prague where as the top seed she will meet her twin sister Kristyna in the opening round.
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