Magda Linette prevailed in a tough three-set encounter against Zarina Diyas to win her first grass court title at the LTA’s Manchester Trophy on Sunday.
The top seed from Poland needed two hours 14 minutes to secure a 7-6(1) 2-6 6-3 victory over 2017 champion Diyas in a match which was interrupted by rain.
A nervy start from Linette saw her broken in the first game but a rain delay at 2-1 helped her to regroup. She won four consecutive games on the resumption of the match to lead 5-2 and although she was pegged back to 5-5 she retained her focus and took the first set in the tiebreak after 58 minutes.
Diyas raised her level in the second set, breaking twice thanks to some punishing ground strokes and quickly levelled the score at a set apiece. The Kazakh maintained her momentum at the start of the decider, breaking in the opening game but Linette immediately broke back. The next four games went with serve before Linette secured a crucial break of serve in the seventh game and then held on to serve out the match.
“It feels amazing, especially because it’s my first title on the grass,” said Linette. “I’m really happy because these tournaments before Wimbledon are really tough because there aren’t many of them and all the girls want to play. I was happy to play all my matches on the grass and to play so well.”
Duan Ying-Ying and Zhu Lin made their first week together a successful one when they lifted the trophy in the women’s doubles. The Chinese pair, who knocked out the No.2 seeds Jiang Xinyu and Tang Qianhui in the semi-finals, defeated Robin Anderson and Laura-Ioana Paar 6-4 6-3 in the final in just 67 minutes. It was a second final in as many weeks for Duan who finished runner-up in the women’s doubles at Roland Garros last Sunday with Zheng Saisai.
“We prepared a lot last night and our coach told us a lot about them so we were ready but it was a tough match because it’s the final and we were a little nervous,” said Zhu. “We played better and better each match this week and we are really happy to win.”
Today’s Betfred Championship fixture between Rochdale Hornets & York City Knights has been called off due to bad weather conditions
We are arrived at the ground at around 1pm and once the press area opened just before 1.30pm we could see that there was some doubt in the game as there was a cover on the pitch which on top was the rain that had fell through the morning and early afternoon.
We came on air at 2pm and the groundstaff were at work to try and get the game on but just after 3pm the game was confirmed as off due to safety concerns.
In a club statement the Hornets said: “TODAY’S scheduled fixture against York City Knights has been cancelled due to safety concerns.
Due to adverse weather and high winds, the ground staff have been unable to remove pitch covers and erect rugby posts in a safe manner.
Rochdale Hornets have worked closely with ground staff and an external contractor exploring all possibilities to allow the game to take place which included delaying kick off in the hope we would have a window where the sheets could be removed and posts could be erected safely.
Rochdale Hornets CEO, Steve Kerr said: “Whilst we are extremely disappointed and frustrated by this situation the safety of all staff in the stadium is paramount.
“We will work hard over the coming days with Rochdale AFC, the stadium company and the Rugby Football League to come to a solution on this and rearrange the fixture.
“Finally I would like to apologise to both sets of players, staff and all supporters who have travelled far and wide to support their teams.
“I would especially like to extend my apologies to the large number of York City Knights supporters who have travelled today.”
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