On This Day: The Third-Youngest Final

June 13, 2004 - Usher topped the Billboard Hot 100, movie-goers were heading to Hogwarts and two ultra-talented teenagers were battling it out in Birmingham.

Published June 13, 2014 12:14

On This Day: The Third-Youngest Final
Maria Sharapova, Tatiana Golovin

BIRMINGHAM, England - It was Sunday, June 13, 2004 when two of the WTA's most promising rising stars at the time - Maria Sharapova and Tatiana Golovin - played what was, and still is, the third-youngest final in WTA history, battling it out for what was then called the DFS Classic in Birmingham.

After losing the first set, Sharapova ended up rallying to beat Golovin that day, 4-6, 6-2, 6-1, and left with her third WTA title, having won her first two the year before in Tokyo and Québec City. But this was her first WTA title on a surface other than hardcourts, and it was clearly special for her.

"I love playing on grass and to win my first grass court title here is a huge thing for me," Sharapova said after winning the final. "This tournaments holds so many memories now, so it feels good."

The victory turned out to be a springboard for greater things - much, much greater things, and soon.

"This is the best possible preparation for Wimbledon, the best you can get," she said. "I've had some tough wins here and winning a title always gives you the confidence to think that you can win more.

"I always believe I can win the title when I enter an event."

A few weeks later she was the Wimbledon champion.

Only two other WTA finals have ever had a younger combined age:

1. 1991 San Diego - 33 years
Jennifer Capriati (15 years/4 months) d. Monica Seles (17 years/8 months)

2. 1980 Tampa - 33 years & 4 months
Andrea Jaeger (15 years/5 months) d. Tracy Austin (17 years/11 months)

3. 2004 Birmingham - 33 years & 6 months
Maria Sharapova (17 years/1 month) d. Tatiana Golovin (16 years/5 months)

And the icing on the cake? Sharapova also won the doubles alongside Maria Kirilenko, her second and most recent singles-doubles sweep - she did it at Tokyo the year before (with Tamarine Tanasugarn).

A few more throwbacks to June 13, 2004...
No.1 song on Billboard Hot 100 singles: Burn by Usher
No.1 album on Billboard 200 albums: Under My Skin by Avril Lavigne
No.1 movie at US Box Office: Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
No.1 men's tennis player: Roger Federer

Maria Sharapova

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