Heather Watson fought off teen Leylah Fernandez to take the Acapulco title 6-4, 6-7(8), 6-1. The Brit let slip five championship points in the second set, but was able to close out her fourth career title in three sets.
“I’m so happy to get my fourth title,” said Watson. “It’s been a few years, so I’m just really, really happy I came through that match.
“It was so up and down,” she added. “I had those points in the second set, and I wasn’t able to win that, but I was really pleased with how I stayed in the moment, and won that third set.”
Watson’s last title came at 2016 Monterrey where she beat Kirsten Flipkens.
The 17-year-old Fernandez was appearing in her first WTA final. She had qualified and made the final without losing a set.
“I’ve played Leylah two times before this, and I knew what to expect,” said Watson. “She’s a great player, and it would be really tough because the two matches before that had been really tough. The thing I notice about her the most is the head on her shoulders. She’s very, very mature for her age.”
“I think it’s her mental toughness that really stands out,” she added. “I think she’s going to have a great career ahead of her and rise up the rankings very quickly if she keeps playing like this.”
The Canadian will see her ranking climb from No. 190 to around 130 in the next rankings.
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