The 2010 Japan Open Women’s Singles Final in Tokyo at the Ariake Colosseum was between No.1 seed Caroline Wozniacki (pictured above) and No.7 seed Elena Dementieva on Saturday 2 October. This pair last met at the end of August in New Haven this year on hard courts, which went right down to a final set tie-break before Wozniacki won by 7 points to 5.
The Japan Open is the fifth and final WTA Premier FIVE tournament in 2010, which means it is one of the major tournaments each year. This year is the 26th straight year for this tournament and the prize money is 2 million US dollars. The title sponsorship rights mean that the Japan Open is officially called the Toray Pan Pacific Open or the PPO for short.
The 20 year old Wozniacki from Denmark was looking to move just 310 WTA ranking points away from becoming the World No.1 by winning the title in Japan. This means she could become World No.1 for the very first time by making the semi finals in the next tournament, the China Open in Beijing because she lost in the 1st round there in 2009.
The 1.77m Wozniacki was stung in the 1st set as the 1.8m Dementieva came out going after the ball and her opponent to win the 1st set 6-1 in just 28 minutes. These two players were squared at 3 wins each previously, so we were ready for a final, that would be decided in the final set and these two champions did not disappoint. As can be expected with Wozniacki’s strong mental resolve and fighting abilities she fought back to square the match at 1 set all by turning the tables on her opponent and winning 6-2.
When it came down to the final set it was as we predicted in the (click here ->) Women’s Singles Final Preview, ALL about who can perform on the day and overcome the mental challenges and pressure of the situation. Both players put each under pressure when they were receiving 2nd serves and were very successful in doing so. Wozniacki was buoyed by her consistent winning streak and positive mindset.
Wozniacki won the final set after the soon to be 29 Dementieva succumbed to the pressure of trying to win her 2nd Japan Open singles by double faulting on the last 2 points of the championship, to lose 6-3 in exactly 2 hours. Wozniacki has now won 25 of her past 27 matches, won more titles (5 of them) on the WTA Tour so far this year and leads the tour with the most matches won at 54.
After the match Wozniacki said, “Elena started really strong. I didn’t get enough depth on my ground strokes, but in the beginning of the second set I pressed a little harder, I started to feel the match was turning around a little bit but I still had to keep my focus in the third set and I’m just happy I won the last point.”
Wozniacki was the first player to qualify for the WTA Tour Finals this year. Of her victory and desire for more success Wozniacki said, “I really enjoy winning. I’m feeling good, it’s always nice to hold the trophy in your hand. That’s what you’re practicing for. Hopefully next week in Beijing will be as good. I’ll take it one match at a time and we’ll see.”
Dementieva put on a goof fight and won against some tough opponent’s this week (No.2 seed Vera Zvonareva and No.5 seed Francesca Schiavone). Dementieva did not lose a set on her way to making the final and by doing so, has put herself in 9th place in the race to qualify for the WTA Tour Finals later this month. The Russian will be looking to qualify for the WTA Tour Finals for the tenth time in the past 11 years when she competes at the China Open in Beijing this week in order to move up into the Top 8.
After being overtaken after such an impressive start and 1st set win Dementieva said, “I feel I played very well in the first set and unfortunately I missed some opportunities in the beginning of the second set and lost a bit of momentum, she was fighting and playing solid from the baseline and I’m disappointed the way I finished the match but overall it was a good fight.”
Wozniacki won 900 WTA ranking points and won 350,00 US dollars, whilst Dementieva earned 620 points and 175,000 US dollars in prize money for being the runner-up.
Stay tuned to this tennis website for full coverage of every Grand Slam tournament and every major women’s and men’s tennis tournament on the WTA Tour and ATP Tours. Click this link for further details about the Japan Open including the schedule of play -> Japan Open 2010: September 24-October 2.
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