Russian wins 1st WTA title
Veronika Kudermetova of Russia won her first WTA title, coming up strong on the big points to beat Danka Kovinic 6-4, 6-2 at the Volvo Car Open on Sunday in Charleston, S.C. Kudermetova, 23, did not drop a set in six matches on the way to the championship at the season’s first clay-court tournament — a feat last accomplished here by Serena Williams in 2012. Kovinic sailed a forehand long on match point, making the fifth first-time winner this season on the WTA. Kudermetova, the 15th seed, relied on her serve and forehand to push past Kovinic, of Montenegro, who had defeated three seeded players to advance to the final. Trailing 3-2 in the opening set, Kudermetova fought off three break points to hold serve, then took three of the final four games. Kudermetova trailed again in the final set, 2-1, but rallied again. She let out a scream when she won a point at deuce in the fifth game, which she subsequently won to go ahead 3-2.
Sonego tops in Sardegna Lorenzo Sonego became the first Italian in 15 years to capture an ATP tour clay-court title on home soil after fighting back to beat Laslo Djere of Serbia and win the Sardegna Open in Cagliari, Sardinia, on Sunday. Third-seeded Sonego had to dig deep in the second set before prevailing 2-6, 7-6 (5), 6-4 in a final lasting just over three hours. It was Sonego’s second trophy in as many days after he partnered Andrea Vavassori to the Cagliari doubles title on Saturday, and his second singles trophy overall.