Jelena Ostapenko ended a sterling week with her fifth career WTA singles title, as the Latvian cruised past Veronika Kudermetova of Russia 6-0, 6-4 to claim the crown at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships on Saturday night.
Ostapenko eased to victory after 65 minutes of play and is now projected to rise in the rankings from No.21 to No.13 on Monday. Former World No.5 Ostapenko will return to the Top 20 for the first time since October 2018.
"I think I played really well today," Ostapenko said on court, after the match. "In general, I’m really happy with the whole week, because it was very tough opponents I had to face every round."
Winning ways: Ostapenko, the 2017 Roland Garros champion, defeated four of her fellow Grand Slam champions to reach the final: Sofia Kenin, Iga Swiatek, Petra Kvitova, and Simona Halep.
During that run, Ostapenko came back from a set down against Swiatek, Kvitova and Halep, saving a match point against Kvitova in their clash.
Ostapenko's stellar run showed no signs of stopping during the final against Kudermetova, as she swept to her 10th match-win of the season. Her bagel first set against Kudermetova was her second 6-0 set in a row after also sweeping Halep in the third set of their semifinal.
"I was fighting until the very last point, I even was down a match point against Petra [Kvitova]," said Ostapenko. "Every match was very tough, and I was fighting, that was the main thing I was doing, because I had honestly no other choice. But I’m really happy with the way I was playing all week, and I think this way I can gain more confidence."
Only Top 10 players have beaten Ostapenko this year: Paula Badosa in the first round of Sydney, Barbora Krejcikova in the third round of the Australian Open, and Anett Kontaveit in the St. Petersburg semifinals.
Read more: Draw breakdown for WTA 1000 Doha
Match moments: It took Ostapenko just 23 minutes to zip through the opening frame, as her blistering service returns helped her collect three straight service breaks. Ostapenko additionally won 81 percent of her service points in the first set, where she never faced a break point.
Things were much closer in the second set as Kudermetova's serves started to become more of a determining factor, but Ostapenko fought back from an early break down to power her way to a 5-3 lead.
With Ostapenko serving for the title in that game, Kudermetova found stellar service returns of her own to break for 5-4 and pull back on serve. But return winners came back in full force for Ostapenko to garner two championship points, and she converted the second with an error-forcing forehand.
"Today I knew was going to be a tough match, and I went on the court very focused," said Ostapenko. "I really wanted to win because I love to play in the final, but I hate to lose in the final, so I really wanted to get that title. I think my mentality was good today and I was playing well."
Overall, Ostapenko's fiery game created 16 winners, which outnumbered her 14 unforced errors. Meanwhile, Kudermetova's 10 winners were outpaced by 18 unforced errors, and the Russian was broken six times.
Doubles revenge: Kudermetova exacted a measure of vengeance in the doubles final that followed, as she and Belgium's Elise Mertens defeated Ostapenko and Ukraine's Lyudmyla Kichenok 6-1, 6-3 to claim the title.
No.2 seeds Kudermetova and Mertens eased past unseeded Ostapenko and Kichenok in 58 minutes to close out the event. After needing match-tiebreaks to win their first two rounds, Kudermetova and Mertens won their semifinal and final in straight sets.
Kudermetova and Mertens broke serve five times while only dropping serve once to collect victory. The champions won exactly two-thirds of Kichenok and Ostapenko's second-service points.
It is the second time Kudermetova and Mertens have teamed up to win a title. They claimed the Istanbul title together last season.
Dubai marks Mertens's 15th career WTA doubles title overall. Mertens is a former WTA Doubles World No.1 who is currently ranked No.4 in the discipline. It is the third career WTA doubles title for Kudermetova, who sits at No.9 in the doubles rankings.