HONG KONG, SAR - Caroline Wozniacki's strong finish to the season continued when she lifted her 25th career title at the Prudential Hong Kong Tennis Open, defeating Kristina Mladenovic, 6-1, 6-7(7), 6-2.
The Dane, who won the Toray Pan Pacific Open at the end of September, put in a fine performance against the French youngster - herself into her second final of 2016 - to cap impressive end to the season.
? WTA Insider (@WTA_insider) October 16, 2016
Wozniacki started the match at a canter, breaking the World No.54 in her opening service game, coming to net on break point after running Mladenovic off the court.
After just 23 minutes, Mladenovic found herself serving to stay in the set and avoid a bagel, which she achieved thanks to a measured backhand volley into the corner. All it did was delay Wozniacki, who was undeterred in wrapping up the set.
Mladenovic underwent lengthy treatment before the second set, but returned to hold the first game, although she was still struggling with her first serve.
Wozniacki had looked likely to cement her advantage and break once more but, serving at 1-2, she contrived to let a 40-0 lead slip thanks and lost serve after sending a routine forehand into the tramlines. The advantage was short-lived, with Mladenovic sending a stroke wide to hand Wozniacki a break.
Mladenovic moved ahead once more thanks to a wayward backhand from the Dane, who struck back again to level the set immediately thanks to a pair of excellent returns at deuce.
The match settled into a rhythm from then on and a tie-break was needed to decide the set. After a frenetic breaker, Wozniacki sent a backhand into the net to hand Mladenovic two set points, and she only needed one.
However, her recovery was only brief and after Wozniacki had saved three break points in the opening game of the decider, she raced into a commanding lead.The first break came when Mladenovic sent a shot into the net and a second followed with an overcooked forehand.
Mladenovic had a partial recovery, holding serve then breaking back when Wozniacki was serving for the title, but the 26-year-old finally got over the line with her second match point.