WTA Final: Caroline Garcia wins the biggest title of her career with a win over Aryna Sabalenka




CNN

Caroline Garcia capped a remarkable six-month run in her tennis career by winning the WTA Finals with a 7-6, 6-4 victory over Aryna Sabalenka in Fort Worth, Texas.

Garcia was ranked in the top 70 in the world in June, but has been in excellent form since then, culminating in the biggest title of her career on Monday.

“Definitely a lot of huge happiness” was how the 29-year-old described her emotions after overcoming Sabalenka in straight sets – taking the first set in a tie break, and breaking her opponent in the opening game of the second set.

The win will make Garcia the second French player to win the WTA Tour’s season-ending tournament since Amelie Mauresmo in 2005.

It also sees him rise to a career high of 4th in the world rankings and $1.57 million in earnings.

In a tight first set, Garcia produced a relentless serving performance – hitting 10 aces and winning 81.5% of her first serve points – and came to the net to great effect.

Sabalenka, who knocked out world No. 1 Iga Swiat to earn a place in Monday’s final, served three aces in response, but her serve also saw her serve fall short with two double faults in the tie break, including one to give Garcia the first set.

The story of Sabalenka’s season has been well-known as the Belarusian recorded a total of 425 double misses; no other player has finished in the 300s this year, according to the WTA website.

In the first game of the second set, Garcia broke Sabalenka with a powerful forehand return, setting up the first break point of the contest, then served out the match and claimed her fourth title since June.

“This tournament I think I really got better and better from match to match,” Garcia told Tennis Channel while wearing a Texan cowboy hat.

Despite her loss to Swiatek last week, Garcia bounced back with victories over Coco Gauff, Daria Kasatkina and Maria Sakkari en route to beating Sabalenka in the final.