Jelena Ostapenko reflected on one of the strangest weeks in WTA history as she claimed the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships singles title on Saturday night — and then lost the doubles title to the same opponent.
The Latvian overpowered Veronika Kudermetova 6-0, 6-4 in the singles to claim her first Dubai crown, but came up short as she looked over the net at the same challenger only a couple of hours later.
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Kudermetova and Belgian Elise Mertes — the second seeds — proved too strong for Ostapenko and teammate Lyudmyla Kichenok, as they went down 6-1, 6-3.
Even the players and officials were trying to recall a time when such a clash occurred and Ostapenko said: “It doesn’t happen very often. To play the same against singles and doubles — the very same person — that is strange. I think Veronika, she wanted to win at least doubles because obviously it’s not the best thing to lose in the final, to go to the final and lose it. At least she has a doubles title.”
Ostapenko has no let-up as — after 12 games in six days here in Dubai — she moves on to Doha for the Qatar Open.
“I didn’t have any days off after St Petersburg because I made semis there,” she said. “I’m just going to play Doha before Indian Wells, take some days off, recharge. But now I feel good, honestly. Like today I felt great on the court, especially in my singles.
“You wake up in the morning and you don’t have to go for the practice, you just chill all day. Sometimes it helps. Sometimes you go somewhere to do some fun things, go to the cinema, go for friends, go for a walk, go for a walk with a dog, something fun, something nice. In general the thing when your brain rests is when you wake up you don’t have to go for practice, you are not stressed anymore.”
It is easier to rest with a trophy beside you.