Déjà Vu In Budapest Final
Published July 10, 2010 12:00
BUDAPEST, Hungary - For the first time this year, the same players who met in the final of an event in 2009 will meet again the same final in 2010, as Agnes Szavay and Patty Schnyder reached the GDF SUEZ Grand Prix final.
Szavay, the No.7 seed, was pushed to the limit by Alexandra Dulgheru before managing a two-hour, 45-minute win over the No.2 seed, 61 57 75. Szavay was two points away from victory serving for the match at 61 54, but had to put in some overtime as Dulgheru wouldn't give in so easily. Szavay broke again at 5-all in the third set and served it out, albeit having to save a break point.
At No.49 in the world, Szavay is Hungary's No.1 player, although the 21-year-old was as high as No.13 two years ago. She is one of only two Hungarians in the Top 100, alongside No.72 Melinda Czink. The GDF SUEZ Grand Prix is the only Sony Ericsson WTA Tour event in her native Hungary.
Schnyder, unseeded but the conqueror of No.1 seed Alisa Kleybanova in the early rounds, looked like she was going to cruise against Zuzana Ondraskova in the second semifinal, racing out to a 62 20 lead. But she was pushed too, with Ondraskova - a qualifier - finding her range, winning nine of the next 12 games to win the second set and go up 3-1 in the third; the momentum swung again however, as Schnyder won five straight games to prevail, 62 46 63.
Szavay and Schnyder are tied 1-1 in their head-to-head. Szavay won the first meeting in the Budapest title match a year ago, 26 64 62, but at Madrid earlier this year had to retire in the first set due to a right hamstring injury.
Szavay is 3-2 in career finals; Schnyder, 10 years her senior, is 11-14. Both are competing in their first finals since this one last year.