Auckland: World number four Agnieszka Radwanska swept to a 6-4, 6-4 win over Yanina Wickmayer in the ASB Classic final on Saturday, setting her up perfectly for this month’s Australian Open.
“I’m very, very happy. I couldn’t have asked for a better way to start the year,” said the Wimbledon finalist after strolling through the week-long Auckland tournament without dropping a set.
“It’s a great way to prepare for the Australian Open.”
The Polish star was off to buy her 11th Louis Vuitton handbag to celebrate - the tournament top-seed says she traditionally treats herself to a new handbag “as a reward” for each WTA title and already has 10 in her collection.
After being forced into two tie breaks in her semi-final against unseeded American Jamie Hampton, Radwanska took early control in the final against Wickmayer when she broke the Belgian’s second serve.
Although she dropped her own serve at 4-3 she immediately broke Wickmayer again before serving for the set.
With the Belgian having trouble handling Radwanska’s short ball, the Pole made the decisive break in the second set at 3-3.
Wickmayer, making her third Auckland final in four years and a winner in 2010, was in trouble on her next serve at 3-5 and 0-40 down but fought back to keep her hopes alive before Radwanska served out for the match.
“I’m disappointed but I left my heart and soul on court,” Wickmayer said. “I was trying to be as aggressive as I could but it wasn’t enough today.”
Radwanska took one hour and 37 minutes to wrap up the final and is now 2-1 up in her head-to-head matches with Wickmayer who was the tournament third seed and is ranked 23rd in the world.
Meanwhile, French tennis star Jo-Wilfried Tsonga has withdrawn from next week’s Sydney International with a hamstring injury, tournament organisers said today.
The world number eight pulled out of the last major lead-up event to this month’s Australian Open after suffering the injury playing for France in the mixed teams Hopman Cup in Perth on Friday.
“Unfortunately Jo-Wilfried Tsonga sustained an injury in Perth and has been forced to pull out of the Apia International Sydney with a left hamstring injury,” tournament director Craig Watson said.
“We wish him a speedy recovery and all the best for a successful Australian Open.”
Tsonga became the second top seed to drop out of the Sydney event after French compatriot Richard Gasquet, the world number 10, pulled out for personal reasons, organisers said.