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Pliskova Powers Past Cornet In Brisbane, Returns To Top 5

Karolina Pliskova capped a perfect start to the season with a dominant victory over Alizé Cornet in the final of the Brisbane International.

Published January 07, 2017 12:14

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BRISBANE, Australia - Karolina Pliskova capped a perfect start to the season with a dominant victory over Alizé Cornet in the final of the Brisbane International on Saturday evening.

After little over an hour on court, Pliskova calmly swatted away an overhead to complete a 6-0, 6-3 win and lift her seventh career title.

"The first set was very dominant. But then I think I took speed off my serve a little bit somehow and was more relaxed," Pliskova told the press afterwards. "[The second set] was closer, definitely, but still two breaks and 6-3, so I was feeling comfortable on my serve, even though there were few tougher games than in the first.

"I was just expecting it was not going to be that easy like it was in the first. I didn't miss almost whole set in the first set. Yeah, I was feeling pretty good today."

Pliskova was in irresistible form from the outset, breaking in the opening game. Cornet had no answers to the early onslaught, dropping serve again when a forehand whistled past her down the line. With just 18 minutes on the clock, the set was over, Pliskova nonchalantly stroking a drive volley beyond the Frenchwoman's reach.

Cornet showed her famed fighting spirit in the second, disrupting the No.3 seed's rhythm to get on the scoreboard and even exerting a modicum of pressure on return. However, Pliskova remained as unflappable as ever, defusing the danger before making a beeline for the trophy.

Pliskova received the silverware from four-time Australian Open champion Evonne Goolagong Cawley, and her display further underlined her credentials as a future major winner.

Worryingly for her rivals, the Czech and new coach David Kotyza still believe there is plenty of room for improvement. "I think I can still play better than I was playing this tournament, but it was enough for every match here," she said. "We have been working on few things in the last month when I was in preparation at home. So he's just showing me new stuff which I was not able to do before. Let's hope we can still improve, and let's hope this is not the best result what we gonna have."

On Monday she will return to No.5 in the rankings, a position she briefly occupied shortly after last year's run to the US Open final. Many will fancy her to go one better in the upcoming Australian Open, including Cornet, who was magnanimous during her runner-up speech.

"I wish I'd done better tonight, but Karolina was way too good for me and I bet she's going to win a Slam soon." Cornet said.

"I had an amazing week here in Brisbane and enjoyed every moment. I'm proud I made it to the final, it wasn't easy but I did it. Of course I couldn't make this last step but there's a lot of positives I can take out of it."

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