BASTAD, Sweden - Katerina Siniakova clinched her second career WTA title at the Ericsson Open in Bastad, shocking top seed and former WTA World No.1, Caroline Wozniacki, 6-3, 6-4.
Delayed by heavy rain after the conclusion of the doubles final, Siniakova and Wozniacki endured a tough battle on the heavy red clay before the Czech youngster earned the win after nearly two hours on court a year after reaching her maiden WTA final in Bastad.
"It’s really amazing for me," Siniakova said during the trophy presentation. "Last year was really good, and so I’m so happy that I came back because I couldn’t imagine a better week.
"Caroline has had such a great season and it’s so much pressure to play against you. I’m sorry I won!" she added as the crowd laughed. "I was just enjoying the game even in the tough conditions."
Wozniacki has been in the midst of a career renaissance in 2017, reaching four finals before Wimbledon and becoming the first woman to win 40 matches this season.
Playing in her fifth final, the Dane was aiming to take home her first title after runner-up finishes in Doha, Dubai, Miami, and Eastbourne, but was undone by right elbow injury for which she took a medical timeout after the first set, striking an uncharacteristic 39 unforced errors to just 19 winners.
"It was a tough match," Wozniacki said. Katerina played very well, so congratulations on winning the title. I’m sure we’ll have many more matches. It’s been a good week.
"I’m looking forward to the US Open Series and the US Open. It’s one of the tournaments where I’ve done my best, and it’s one of my favorite tournaments of the year. I’m excited to go back, see how I can do on the hardcourts and hopefully finish the year strongly."
Siniakova also dealt with a right arm injury, but remained calm under pressure and kept her stats relatively clean with 20 winners to 28 unforced errors, and broke serve five times to secure an emotional victory.
"This just means so much to me," the 21-year-old said through tears.
Starting the season with her maiden title at the Shenzhen Open, Siniakova has become a threat in both singles and doubles, partnering countrywoman Lucie Hradecka to reach four finals - including the BNP Paribas Open back in March.
While Wozniacki is set to remain No.6 on the WTA rankings, she moves up one spot on the Porsche Race to Singapore, leapfrogging Roland Garros champion Jelena Ostapenko to take the No.7 position.
Siniakova will move up nearly 20 spots on both WTA and The Race rankings at No.39, three spots away from her career-high of No.36.
More to come...