Black, Huber Secure First Title of Year in Paris
Published February 17, 2009 12:00
PARIS, France - Cara Black and Liezel Huber won their first title of the year and their 23rd as a team at the Open GDF Suez on Sunday, outlasting No.2 seeds Kveta Peschke and Lisa Raymond in the final in a match tie-break, 64 36 104. Black and Huber, co-ranked No.1 in the world and the top seeds, won one title together in 2001 and two more in 2006, but have been on top of the doubles world for more than two years now, having won a phenomenal nine in 2007 and 10 more in 2008.
"We're very excited about our first title of the year," said Black, who now has 47 Sony Ericsson WTA Tour doubles titles; Huber has 35. "It was a great match today against two great players. We had such a good year last year, achieving so much, so our expectations are high and we are happy to have found our form again."
"Today was one of the best wins. We have won Grand Slams, we have won the Sony Ericsson Championships, but this win today really proved something to us," Huber said. "It is our first title of the year, so we are happy about the win here at the Open GDF SUEZ. When I came here this week I was still jetlagged from Fed Cup, but we've worked really hard and the result was the way we wanted it."
Black and Huber had a smooth ride into the finals, advancing in straight sets against three unseeded teams. Peschke and Raymond were extended to a match tie-break in the quarters and had a walkover in their semifinal match against No.3 seeds Sorana Cirstea and Monica Niculescu.
This was Black and Huber's second title at the Open GDF Suez, having also won together in 2007, though they lost in the first round last year. Raymond failed to add to her total of 67 career Tour doubles titles and Peschke to her 13.
PATTAYA CITY, Thailand - Second-seeded Tamarine Tanasugarn and Yaroslava Shvedova teamed up to win the title at the PTT Pattaya Open, beating Yuliya Beygelzimer and Vitalia Diatchenko in the final, 63 62. It was Tanasugarn's sixth career Tour doubles title and the first for Shvedova, although she did have one Tour title to her name already, having won the singles title in Bangalore two years ago.
Tanasugarn and Shvedova had a bye in the first round, then rolled over Nungnadda Wannasuk and Varatchya Wongteanchai before surviving a match tie-break in the semis against No.3 seeds Sania Mirza and Mara Santangelo. The road to the finals for Beygelzimer and Diatchenko was highlighted by a straight sets upset of No.1 seeds Akgul Amanmuradova and Chuang Chia-Jung in the semis. Chuang won the doubles in Pattaya last year with Chan Yung-Jan.
Tanasugarn and Shvedova, who were playing together for the eighth time, received a total of $11,000 in prize money. Tanasugarn, who was playing in her home country, lost in the quarters in singles, while Shvedova fell in the second round to top seed and eventual champ Vera Zvonareva.