Dutch veteran Arantxa Rus ended the fairytale run of German teenager Noma Noha Akugue on Saturday to capture her maiden WTA title at the age of 32 in Hamburg.
Rus won through 6-0, 7-6 (7/3) in 1hr 45min to deny wild card Akugue a dream victory in her first WTA main draw event.
“I’m very proud of myself that after so many years, I made my first title,” said Rus, who turned pro back in 2008.
She was playing in her 126th tour-level main-draw this week, making her the oldest first-time title-winner in 40 years.
“The day was very long because I was very nervous, but I’m happy that I could play good tennis and it was a great final from both of us.”
In a match between two left-handed players, seventh seed Rus won the opening set without the loss of a game.
Akugue, born in Hamburg to Nigerian parents, fought back in the second with an immediate break, but Rus responded straight away with both holding serve to force a tie-break.
Akugue saved two championship points to hold serve in the 10th game of the second set, and two more in the tiebreak, before Rus won through.
Former world junior World No. 1, Rus had failed to live up to her early promise after winning the girls’ singles title at the Australian Open in 2008.
She came into Hamburg at a career-high 60th ranking, and will break into the Top 50 for the first time on Monday.
/ 3 years ago
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