Monday, 9 April 2018

Bertens and Muguruza win titles

The last day of competition at the Volvo Car Open in Charleston featured the two semi finals and final due to weather problems on the previous day.

The first semi final on display was arguably one of the top handful of women’s matches for 2018.

For two and three quarter hours, Madison Keys (7) and Kiki Bertens (12) treated the crowd to an exciting brand of relentless attacking tennis.

There was no fear of committing errors (and there were plenty) in the process of firing off exhilarating winners off both wings in set one.

After three breaks of serve in the first three games, and Bertens held for a 3-1 lead.  Keys responded by breaking back in the sixth game, but couldn’t consolidate and the Bertens powerful forehand assisted the twelfth seed to 5-3.  Chances for a late comeback by Keys were denied , with Bertens claiming the advantage 6-4.

Set two saw the Dutch woman playing catch up as Keys, serving first, was up a break, with the chance of serving for 5-3.  The American failed on that occasion, and at 5-5 was broken for a third time.

A match point for Bertens was wasted, and the resultant Keys eventually broke serve.  The resultant tie break was dominated by Keys, who had previously lost all tie breaks in which she’d participated this year.

At a set apiece, it was only appropriate that the match be decided by a third set tie break.

A double fault at 4-4, and facing break point, led Bertens to a dropped serve, and Keys served for the match.

At match point, a Keys forehand error let Bertens off the hook, and eventually serve was broken for 5-5.

Tie break arrived, and Bertens triumphed seven points to five.

6-4 6-7(2) 7-6(5) was enough for Kiki book a spot in the final against Julia Goerges (5) who overcame Anastasija Sevastova (8) 7-6(5) 6-3

The first set should have gone to Sevastova, given the break opportunities afforded her.

Both players achieved a single service break, Goerges from one chance, Sevastova from eleven.

The final was a whitewash, all over in  under an hour, Kiki Bertens winning the title against Julia Goerges 6-2 6-1.

The fifth career title for Kiki was, like all the others, won on a clay surface, the difference here being the colour - green.

In Monterrey, Garbine Muguruza (1) dropped her first set for the tournament, to Timea Babos (4) in the final.

Down a break in the second set, and a break point away from a double break, Garbine fought back from the brink.

In the end, the top seed found her way into the winners circle 3-6 6-4 6-3 - her first title for 2018.

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