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.”
Photo credit Getty Images.