Wild card Laura reigns in Stuttgart

New Straits Times - - Sport -

STUTTGART: Ger­many’s Laura Siege­mund was the shock win­ner of Stuttgart’s WTA tour­na­ment on Sun­day af­ter her three-set win over France’s Kristina Mlade­n­ovic in the fi­nal.

Laura, ranked 49th in the world and a wild card en­try for the main draw, sealed a 6-1, 2-6, 7-6 (7-5) win over Kristina, who had beaten Maria Shara­pova in the semi­fi­nal, end­ing the Rus­sian’s come­back from a 15-month dop­ing ban.

The 29-year-old con­verted her first match point af­ter nearly two and a half hours to claim only her sec­ond WTA win af­ter vic­tory at Bas­tad, Swe­den, last July.

“It was an in­cred­i­ble match, I don’t know how I man­aged to win here,” said the new cham­pion. Kristina praised her ri­val. “Laura played some re­ally en­ter­tain­ing ten­nis,” said the 23year-old. Laura made a strong start, charg­ing into a 4-0 lead af­ter twice break­ing Kristina’s serve in what proved to be a topsy-turvy first set.

The French­woman, 19th in the world, broke laura in the fifth game, but the Ger­man re­turned the com­pli­ment break­ing Kristina straight away, then serv­ing out to take the first set in 29 min­utes.

Just as she did in her three-set win over Maria, Kristina turned things around to take the sec­ond set, break­ing laura twice to force a third set.

The de­cider swung back and forth with both play­ers break­ing the other twice to force the tiebreaker, but it was Laura who held her nerve to claim vic­tory.

She drove away with the prize of a brand new Porsche sports car and €107,036 (RM506,000) of win­nings.

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