x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 22 January 2018

Zvonareva beats Wozniacki in Doha to deny Middle East double

In the process, the Russian also earned her 11th career WTA title and first since Pattaya City a year ago.

DOHA // Vera Zvonareva denied Caroline Wozniacki a Middle East double by winning their Qatar Ladies Open final 6-4, 6-4 on Saturday.

The Russian earned her 11th career WTA title and first since Pattaya City a year ago.

"I was just going for my shots. Caroline is a great player, the No. 1 player," said Zvonareva, ranked No. 3. "So I was just fighting for every point.

"It's an unbelievable feeling. I never expected the week to go like this when I started. I slowly built the momentum after the tough three-setters against Daniela (Hantuchova) and Jelena (Jankovic)."

Wozniacki was hoping to add the Doha title to the one she won in Dubai six days ago. But the Dane lost her serve in the first game, and though she returned the compliment in the next, she was broken straight back to lose momentum early.

Zvonareva rallied from love-40 down in the eighth game and eventually served out the set.

The second followed a similar pattern with Wozniacki breaking in the second game, only to see Zvonareva breaking back in the next.

Zvonareva made the decisive break in the seventh after eight deuces when she fired a forehand winner.

Woznaicki hit wide to end the match, dropping her record in finals to 13-7.

"Not a great tournament in the end. But I'm happy to be here," Wozniacki said. "Vera is playing a very good match. She played at a very high level. I had my chances, had quite a few breakpoints. I didn't convert, and then I lost the match."

Following their sixth meeting in 10 months, Zvonareva evened her record against Wozniacki to 4-4.

"I'm very excited at the moment," the 26-year-old Russian said. "It was definitely a special moment for me on the court, and, you know, I was trying to fight for every point out there. And then when I won that last point, I was, you know, so happy."