Flavia Pennetta outdid Roberta Vinci in an historic US Open final for her first Grand Slam title then dropped a bombshell - she announced she'll retire at the end of the year.
WTA Staff

NEW YORK, NY, USA - It was the unlikeliest of Grand Slam finals, but it turned out to be of the highest quality, and it ended in an absolute bombshell - Flavia Pennetta outdid Roberta Vinci in an historic US Open final for her first Grand Slam title and then announced she'll be retiring from the sport.

Neither player saw a run like this coming into the tournament - Pennetta, the No.26 seed, and Vinci, not even seeded. And they took out all the biggest names in the game along the way, Pennetta taking out No.4 seed Petra Kvitova and No.2 seed Simona Halep in the quarters and semis, and Vinci pulling off what might be one of the biggest upsets of all time, stunning the World No.1, Serena Williams.

But once they stepped out on the court Saturday it was all business, with Pennetta breaking for an early 4-2 lead but Vinci breaking right back, and the two going to a tie-break to decide the opening set.

Pennetta came through that one and her momentum only grew from there as she jumped out to a 4-0 lead in the second set, and she never really looked back, eventually closing Vinci out, 7-6(4), 6-2.

And then came the trophy speeches - first Vinci, who, despite finishing runner-up, was elated anyway.

"The past 24 hours I've had a lot of things on my mind, and I was a little bit tired, especially in the first set," Vinci said. "But I lost in the finals - I'm really happy, and of course really happy for Flavia.

"It's tough to play against a player you've known for a long time, but I tried to do my best. Flavia just played unbelievable today. It was a great match, and I have to just say congratulations to her.

"And I would like to say thank you to everyone who came to watch - I'll see you next year!"

Pennetta then took the microphone for her champion's trophy speech.

"I'm really happy right now," she said. "I have to say, before this tournament I never thought I'd be so far. I never thought I'd be the champion here. It's amazing when big surprises like this happen.

"It's a dream come true. When I was young, I was always thinking to be No.1 and win a Grand Slam. I also wanted to win Rome, but a Grand Slam is maybe a little better! But it's a dream come true. It's also nice to play with a friend of mine. Roberta played unbelievable. She had an incredible week."

But just as the microphone was being taken away, she had one last thing to say.

"There's one more thing I'd like to say - it's the way I would like to say goodbye to tennis."

Watch Pennetta's emotional - and historic - announcement at the trophy ceremony right here:

Pennetta later clarified this was her last US Open - she'll be playing until the end of the year.