Sport

Elite Trophy win tops 'phenomenal' year for Barty

Elite Trophy win tops 'phenomenal' year for Barty”

Barty defeated the Chinese Wang Qiang, 6-3, 6-4 in final of the Hengqin Life WTA Elite Trophy in Qiang's home country.

The win makes it her third overall singles title and second for 2018 following her outstanding run at Nottingham in June.

Wang, who has risen to 22nd in the world on the back of a fine run of form, staged a minor comeback to get back on serve at 4-3 but a delightful drop shot handed Barty her third break and she served out to win the set.

"I know that whenever I have played Q in the past, it's always been an extremely tough match", Barty told WTA Media.

Wang was a late replacement for original group-stage victor Madison Keys after the American withdrew from the semifinal with a left knee injury. Keys will go through if she beats China's Wang in straight sets later on Friday.

The two-time grand slam victor from Spain won her final round-robin match - effectively a playoff for a semifinal spot - 6-7, 6-2, 7-6.

"After yesterday's match I wanted to win today, but I was not really thinking about qualifying for the semi-final".

Wang replaced Madison Keys, who was forced to withdraw due to a left knee injury, to place in the tournament. "I'm very excited that it's finished now, time for some vacation and "relax" time before we gear up for the Australian summer".

She needed to come from a set down to oust defending champion Julia Goerges in the last four, and her reward was a comfortable outing on Sunday.

"My goal is to stay top 20 and try and consolidate as best I can".

Wang continued to dominate in the second set as she closed out the match after an hour and 13 minutes without dropping one game.

As Barty attacked, China's No. 1 was struggling to hold onto her own serve let alone mount a counter-attack, and the Australian sealed the victory with a perfectly executed backhand crosscourt volley.



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