News

Serena wins Cincinnati title in final U.S. Open tune-up

Serena wins Cincinnati title in final U.S. Open tune-up

TENNIS: Serena Williams (left) and Ana Ivanovic during the trophy presentation on day seven of the Western and Southern Open tennis tournament at Linder Family Tennis Center. Photo: Reuters

(Reuters) – Serena Williams finished her last U.S. Open tune-up in style by blowing away Serbian Ana Ivanovic 6-4 6-1 to win her first title at the Western and Southern Open in Cincinnati on Sunday.

For the top-seeded American, the triumph marked her first in six visits to Cincinnati and sent a message that she is in top form heading into the year’s final grand slam, where she is the two-time defending champion.

“It’s just amazing to finally win here,” said Williams, who fired a dozen aces and broke her opponent four times. “The fans were amazing and it’s so wonderful to be here.”

After falling behind early, Williams broke her ninth seeded opponent’s serve in the sixth game of the first set to pull even and then broke again four games later to wrap up the opener in 38 minutes after consecutive double faults from Ivanovic.

A year removed from losing the Cincinnati final in a third set tiebreak to Victoria Azarenka, the world number one left nothing to chance in a dominant second set.

Williams broke Ivanovic to open a 3-1 lead in the second set and then relied on her powerful serve to carry her the rest of the way.

It marked the fifth title of the year for the 32-year-old American following wins in Stanford, Rome, Miami and Brisbane.

The Cincinnati tournament is the last of the key tune-ups ahead of the Aug. 25-Sept. 8 U.S. Open in New York.

For 26-year-old Ivanovic, a former world number one who was chasing her fourth title of the year, her run to the Cincinnati final will put her back in the top 10 of the world rankings for the first time in five years.

“It’s been a great week for me in Cincinnati,” said Ivanovic, who was coming off a nearly three-hour win over fifth seed Maria Sharapova in Saturday’s semi-final.

“I really want to congratulate Serena. I think I got a lesson on how to serve today. Maybe after you retire you can give me some tips.”

(Reporting by Frank Pingue in Toronto, editing by Mark Meadows)

Latest Headlines

in Music

Noel Gallagher embarrassed daughter in front of Harry Styles

Noel Gallagher and Anais Gallagher at Arthur - UK film premiere held at the O2 Arena - Arrivals.
London, England - 19.04.11

Noel Gallagher left his teenage daughter mortified by embarrassing her in front of One Direction heart-throb Harry Styles.

in Music

Gene Simmons credits mother for drug-free life

Gene Simmons speaks onstage during the "4th and Loud" portion of the AMC 2014 Summer TCA on Friday, July 11, 2014, in Beverly Hills, Calif.

The Kiss frontman insists he has never been drunk or gotten high because he always worried about his mom's reaction.

in Music

Joan Jett to open for The Who’s 50th anniversary tour

joan

The "My Generation" hitmakers are set to bring their The Who Hits 50! tour to North America.

in Sports

Thursday’s Sports Minute

grizzlies

Here's a look at some of the big sports stories making headlines today, Thursday, Dec. 18.

in Sports

Ray Rice investigation heating up

Former Baltimore Ravens NFL running back Ray Rice and his wife Janay arrive for a hearing at a New York City office building November 5, 2014.

Hundreds of NFL employees gave records to investigators looking into how Commissioner Roger Goodell handled evidence in the Ray Rice case.