Stats Corner: All-Thirtysomething Finals
Published April 30, 2013 05:54
Francesca Schiavone's defeat of fellow 32-year-old Lourdes Domínguez Lino in the Marrakech final on Sunday was one of just six WTA finals since 1990 in which both finalists were 30 or older. Here are the circumstances of each:
1994 Birmingham: 30-year-old Lori McNeil d. 30-year-old Zina Garrison 62 62
McNeil won the last of her 10 WTA titles and her second straight in Birmingham over Garrison.
1995 Birmingham: 31-year-old Zina Garrison d. 31-year-old Lori McNeil 63 63
Garrison did not surrender a set en route to the last of her 14 WTA titles and the only one that came after age 30. It was also the third straight year the Americans met in the Birmingham final, with McNeil having won the previous two.
2005 San Diego: 30-year-old Mary Pierce d. 30-year-old Ai Sugiyama 60 63
Pierce did not drop a set all week in collecting the 18th of her 19 WTA titles. This was the only one of Pierce and Sugiyama's 12 meetings that occurred in a final. Their series ended up knotted at 6-6.
2010 Osaka: 33-year-old Tamarine Tanasugarn d. 40-year-old Kimiko Date-Krumm 75 67(4) 61
Billie Jean King was 39 years and seven months old when she captured Birmingham in 1983. The 40-year-old Date-Krumm would have broken King's record as the oldest WTA titlist had she gotten past Tanasugarn, who herself became the seventh-oldest WTA titlist at 33 years, four months. Nevertheless, Date-Krumm and Tanasugarn made history in participating in the oldest-known final in WTA history at a combined 73 years.
2013 Shenzhen: 30-year-old Li Na d. 30-year-old Klara Zakopalova 63 16 75
Born two days apart, Li and Zakopalova staged a thrilling inaugural final of the Shenzhen Longgang Gemdale Open. Li survived for her seventh WTA title.
2013 Marrakech: 32-year-old Francesca Schiavone d. 32-year-old Lourdes Domínguez Lino 61 63
Schiavone did not lose a set all week, including in a final featuring the second-oldest combined age of WTA finalists in the 21st century. Interestingly enough, Schiavone and Domínguez Lino squared off again two days later in the first round of Oeiras - with the Italian winning her fifth straight in the series.