American teen Ashlyn Krueger triumphed over China’s Zhu Lin in the final of the 2023 Japan Open on Sunday, winning her first WTA title.
The 19-year-old, ranked 123 in the world, came through 6-3, 7-6 (8-6) against her top-seeded opponent at the WTA 250 tournament in Osaka.
It was the culmination of an outstanding week for Krueger, who made the final without losing a set.
The underdog Texan was playing in the first final of her career and only her 11th tournament on the WTA tour.
Lin, for her part, is ranked 35th in the world and was chasing the second WTA title of her career, having bested Ukraine’s Lesia Tsurenko in the final of the Thailand Open in February.
Lin, who defeated Victoria Azarenka at the US Open last month, was the favourite going into the final but was hampered by the power of the tall American, who hit seven aces.
In the first showdown between the two, Krueger quickly dominated the first set, winning 6-3 in 36 minutes with a break on Lin’s first service game.
The second set was more competitive, Lin taking the lead early. But Krueger was able to force a tiebreak, which she won to seal the final in an hour and 36 minutes.
(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and is published from a syndicated news agency feed – AFP)