Lesia Tsurenko captured her third WTA title at the Abierto Mexicano Telcel after a commanding victory over Kristina Mladenovic.
WTA Staff

ACAPULCO, Mexico - 27-year-old Lesia Tsurenko captured her third WTA title at the Abierto Mexicano Telcel after a commanding victory over Kristina Mladenovic, 6-1, 7-5.

"I'm really happy to start the season like this: I had the semifinal in Hobart International and now this title here in Acapulco," Tsurenko said after the match.

"It's three of three now, it's a 100% result for me and this makes me very happy," she added, referencing her perfect success rate in WTA finals. "I'm very happy with this result, and to win the title here it's just amazing."

The No.2 seeded Mladenovic, who was seeking her second title in five weeks, found herself outhit from the start on Saturday night. The Ukrainian's strong play from the baseline didn't allow Mladenovic to find her rhythm; she was broken twice by Tsurenko and found herself down 4-0 after just 15 minutes, and was only able to hit 3 winners in the opening set.

But it was far from smooth sailing after that, with eight consecutive breaks of serve starting out the second set.

It was Mladenovic who gritted out the crucial hold first and established a late foothold at 4-5, but Tsurenko stayed mentally strong to earn her own first hold of the set straight after. She broke once more and took the match with a strong service game for her first Acapulco title.

"It was a very difficult match, I felt very comfortable in the first set but in the second I felt quite nervous," Tsurenko explained, decked out in the traditional Acapulco winner's blue sombrero.

"She played better, and I think I was realizing that I could get the title and that was making me nervous. She really pushed me to play my best tennis because she was attacking a lot. I was just focusing on myself and doing everything that I can. I'm really happy to win."

"I just want to congratulate Lesia," Mladenovic said, delighting the Acapulco crowd by giving her runner-up speech in Spanish. "You've played great today and all week, and especially with these tough conditions. Congrats on the title and on the rest of the season.

"Acapulco is a very special place for me because three years ago was the first time I played the tournament, and I won the title in doubles.

"This year is just the second time I've played here and I've reached the singles final!"