News & Press

Sunday, August 09, 2009

Pennetta Conquers Los Angeles

LOS ANGELES, CA, USA - Flavia Pennetta won the eighth and biggest title of her Sony Ericsson WTA Tour career on Sunday, beating Samantha Stosur in straight sets for the Premier-level LA Women's Tennis Championships.

Pennetta and Stosur, who, seeded No.10 and No.13, were not among the favorites when the draw came out a week earlier, both enjoyed scintillating runs to the final. Pennetta pulled off two Top 10 upsets along the way, getting past Nadia Petrova and Vera Zvonareva in back-to-back matches before winning a thrilling semifinal against Maria Sharapova on Saturday night; Stosur didn't face any Top 10 players but she didn't lose a single set to get to the title match.

The two in-form players collided on Stadium court on Sunday afternoon and it was Pennetta who looked fresher, with a positive winners-to-errors differential (18-16) and her trademark controlled aggression that had taken her to seven Tour titles before this one. Stosur, who was 0-4 in finals before this one, had a tough time, with a negative differential (19-32) and losing her serve four times. Pennetta emerged with her biggest trophy yet after a 64 63 victory.

"I think my serve was very good today. Almost all week it helped me a lot in the important points," said Pennetta, who lost her serve just once in the final, allowing Stosur to close from 1-3 to 3-3 in the second set. "When I was aggressive I won the points today. That was a big step for me to improve my game. I've played a few finals before... I was ready to play the final today."

Pennetta's first seven singles titles on the Tour all came below the Premier level, and only one of them - Bangkok in 2007 - came on hardcourts, with the other six coming on clay. She is now 8-9 lifetime in Tour singles finals. She is also on an 11-match win streak: 5-0 to win Palermo a few weeks ago, 6-0 to win here.

Stosur fell to 0-5 lifetime in Tour singles finals, having finished runner-up at Gold Coast and Sydney in 2005, Prague in 2006 and Seoul last season.

"Sure, I'm disappointed. I would have loved to win my first title today. But it wasn't meant to be," Stosur said. "I played a very good player today and she played a little better than me. It's certainly something I'm going to build on the rest of the year and the rest of the US summer.",,12781~1748828,00.html#

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