Sunday, 25 September 2016

Wozniacki takes Tokyo

Quite a lot of tennis activity throughout the world in the past week, with ATP tournaments in Russia and France, and WTA events in Japan, China and Korea.

Recently crowned US Open champion Stan Wawrinka, was installed as top seed for the St Petersburg draw, and had little difficulty navigating his way through to the final four. He was joined there by third seed Tomas Berdych, fourth seed Roberto Bautista Agut and fifth seed Alexander Zverev.  Second seed Milos Raonic had been knocked out early by Russian Mikhail Youzhny, to the joy of locals.

The final will be fought out between Wawrinka and Zverev after Stan's straight sets victory over Roberto and Zverev's two set impressive elimination of Berdych - his latest top ten scalp.

The Metz semi finals were played between the four top seeds.  Top seed Dominic Thiem upset the French crowd when he defeated fourth seed Gilles Simon, after dropping the opening set.  He will meet third seed Lucas Pouille in the final following his successful semi win over second seed David Goffin.  So the Metz crowd will have a French player to cheer for with the title on the line.

In Tokyo, three of the top four seeds failed to make the semi finals - these included US Open finalist Karolina Pliskova and Roland Garros champion Garbine Muguruza.  Caroline Wozniacki continued her resurgence from New York by not only defeating fourth seed Carla Suarez Navarro in the second round, but rebounding from a set down against second seed Aga Radwanska in the semi finals to win in three and claim a spot in the final.

The other semi finalists were Elina Svitolina and Naomi Osaka.  The locals were rapt when Osaka won through to the final which featured two unseeded players, but Wozniacki proved too strong, and took home the trophy with her 7-5 6-3 victory.

The Seoul final featured fifth seed Monica Niculescu from Romania against unseeded Spanish player Lara Arruabarrena.  In a strange scoreline, Lara won her second WTA title, her first coming over 4 years ago.  The win was in three sets 6-0 2-6 6-0.

Completing the trio of unseeded champions this week is Guangzhou winner Lesia Tsurenko.  The Ukraine player's second career title came at the expense of tournament second seed Jelena Jankovic in three close sets.

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