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2014 Cincinnati WTA Premier

Serena Wins First Cincy Premier Title, Beats Ivanovic in Final August 17 2014 Cincinnati, Ohio - Serena Williams is finally a Western & Southern Open champion. In her sixth Cincinnati appearance, Williams takes home the crown with a 6-4, 6-1 win over Ana Ivanovic.


The top seed got off to a slow start against Ivanovic, falling behind 1-3 in just a matter of minutes. In the fourth game, the Serb had three break points to further the lead, but Williams held to make it 2-3. Williams broke two times after that to clinch the first set in 38 minutes. The second set was dominated by the World No.1 as she fired off 12 aces and won 100% of points behind her first serve. Williams recorded only four unforced errors in the second set, and finished the match with six winners in the last nine points.


“I really felt she was really solid today,” Ivanovic said of her opponent. “Not only on her serve, but on the groundstrokes I felt like she was dominating. I did have chance, especially when we started the rallies, but I just couldn't get the serve back.” Williams takes home her fifth title of the season and extends her 2014 finals record to 5-0. “I love this moment,” Serena said. “I love holding up the trophy and I love doing the work that it takes to hold up a trophy. For me, there is no better feeling.”

Cincinnati Premier Women's Singles Final Sunday Aug 18

1-Serena Williams beat 9-Ana Ivanovic 6-4 6-1


Cincinnati Masters Women's Doubles Final Sunday Aug 18

R.Kops-Jones/A.Spears beat T.Babos/K.Mladenovic 6-1 2-0 ret.

Day Seven

Serena Downs Wozniacki Anew, Sets Cincy Final Clash vs Ivanovic August 16 2014 Cincinnati, Ohio -  Top seed Serena Williams rallied to defeat Caroline Wozniacki 2-6, 6-2, 6-4 in the first women’s semifinal of the day at the 2014 Western & Southern Open.


No.12 seed Wozniacki got off to a quick start, breaking Williams three times to clinch the first set in just 29 minutes. Williams, who held serve only one time in the opening set, recorded twice as many unforced errors as winners. It was the World No.1 who came out firing in the second set, opening up with a break. Williams broke Wozniacki two more times and served out the set at love to force the match to a third.


The two women exchanged seven breaks in the final set, but Williams’ two holds of serve gave her the edge and the win in the hour and 43 minute match. In the end, Wozniacki recorded only 9 winners compared to Williams’ 35, but had nearly half the unforced errors.


With this win, the 2013 finalist improves her 2014 record to 37-6 and moved to 17-1 against Top 20 opponents this season. Williams is still looking for her first title in Cincinnati, after making six appearances. The only other event she has played six times without claiming a title is Sydney.


In a late night Center Court battle, Ana Ivanovic battled past Maria Sharapova 6-2, 5-7, 7-5 for the remaining spot in the Western & Southern Open Women’s Final. No.9 seed Ivanovic came out firing, breaking the former champion two times while putting 81% of her returns in play in the first set to clinch it 6-2.


After falling behind 2-5 in the second set, Sharapova put together a string of three holds and two breaks to push Ivanovic in to a deciding set. Ivanovic, who fired off 27 winners in the two hour and 46 minute match, fought off two match points in the third set and broke Sharapova in the final game to win the match.


The former World No.1 is through to her first final in Cincinnati to face 2013 finalist Serena Williams, who leads their head-to-head 6-1. When asked about her opponent in the final, Ivanovic said, “She's No. 1 player in the world and she's a great champion, so I think it's going to be a good match.”

Cincinnati Women's Singles Semifinals Saturday Aug 16

1-Serena Williams beat 12-Caroline Wozniacki 2-6 6-2 6-4

9-Ana Ivanovic beat 5-Maria Sharapova 6-2 5-7 7-5

Day Six

Sharapova Downs Halep; Wozniacki Upsets Radwanska; Serena, Ivanovic in Semis August 15 2014 Cincinnati, Ohio -  Top seed Serena Williams booked a spot in the Western & Southern Open semifinals for the third time in her career with a 6-1, 6-3 win over Jelena Jankovic.


Serena, who is now 16-1 versus Top 20 opponents in 2014, broke the former champion five times and lost only two points when getting her first serve in during their 58 minute match. The World No.1 is still looking for her first title in Cincinnati, after making six appearances. The only other event Serena has played six times without claiming a title is Sydney.


“I would love to win here. Absolutely. It would be great to win. But at the same time, I don't want put that pressure on myself.” Serena will face former World No.1 Caroline Wozniacki in the semis, who defeated No.4 seed Agnieszka Radwanska 6-4, 7-6(5). Wozniacki, who made her WTA debut as a 15-year-old wild card at Cincinnati in 2005, broke Radwanska four times en route to the hour and 43 minute win.


This marks Wozniacki’s second Top 10 victory of the week. She ousted World No.7 Angelique Kerber last night in straight sets. The semi-final matchup will be the pair’s 9th meeting. The two had an epic three set battle in Montreal last week, with Serena winning it 7-5 in the third. What does Wozniacki think of her chances? “She has played really well the last few matches. It's not going to be easy. I'm excited for the challenge. I really need to tennis to have chance to win.”


On the bottom half of the draw, former champion Maria Sharapova rallied to overcome World No.2 Simona Halep 3-6, 6-4, 6-4. The two exchanged 16 breaks during their two and a half hour match, but it was the former World No.1 who pulled out her fifth win over the Romanian and improved her record here to 13-2.


“I'm willing to go out there and no matter how long it takes to run and play defense and turn that into offense, something I think I did quite well in the third set, which was a big factor for me,” Sharapova shared with the press. Sharapova is through to the semi-finals in Cincinnati for the third time in her career and will face No.9 seed Ana Ivanovic.


Ivanovic, who advances to the semis for the second time, recorded her 46th match win of the season, defeating 19-year-old Elina Svitolina 6-2, 6-3.

Cincinnati Women's Singles Quarterfinals Friday Aug 15

1-Serena Williams beat 8-Jelena Jankovic 6-1, 6-3

5-Maria Sharapova beat 2-Simona Halep 3-6 6-4 6-4

12-Caroline Wozniacki beat 4-Agnieszka Radwanska 6-4 7-6(5)

9-Ana Ivanovic beat Elina Svitolina 6-2 6-3

Serena, Halep, Radwanska Cruise; Sharapova, Ivanovic Battle into Quarters August 14 2014 Cincinnati, Ohio - Coming off her title win in Montreal last week, No.4 seed Agnieszka Radwanska breezed past Sabine Lisicki 6-1, 6-1 in just 52 minutes. Radwanska broke the German six times en route to the win, solidifying her spot in the Western & Southern Open quarterfinals for the third time in her career.


Ana Ivanovic survived a three set battle with Svetlana Kuznetsova, defeating the Russian 6-2, 2-6, 6-3. Ivanovic, who leads the WTA in 2014 match wins with 45, reaches the quarterfinals for the second time. She meets 19-year old Elina Svitolina for the third time this year. Svitolina kept her hot streak going, ousting No.15 seed Carla Suarez Navarro 4-6, 6-4, 6-4 Thursday. The Ukrainian, who upset No.3 seed and two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova in the second round, will look to better her 0-4 record against Ivanovic Friday night.


Former champion Maria Sharapova survived Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 6-4, 7-6(2) in the round of 16 Thursday. Sharapova, who faced Pavlyuchenkova for the third time this year, broke the fellow Russian five times and won 73% of her first service points in the two hour match. The former World No.1 now owns a 12-2 record at Cincinnati and will meet new World No.2 Simona Halep in the quarterfinals, in a rematch of the 2014 French Open Final.


Simona Halep was the first woman to book a spot in the quarters after defeating Lucie Safarova 6-4, 7-5 Thursday morning. Halep, who is making her third main draw appearance in Cincinnati, broke the Czech lefty four times during their 90 minute meeting.


Serena Williams rolled through to the quarterfinals with a 6-2, 6-2 win over Flavia Pennetta. The World No.1 served up eight aces and broke the Italian five times in their hour long match. With this win, Serena betters her 2014 record against Top 20 opponents to 15-1, her only loss coming at the Australian Open to Ana Ivanovic.

Cincinnati Women’s Singles Third Round Thursday Aug 14

1-Serena Williams beat 13-Flavia Pennetta 6-2 6-2            

2-Simona Halep beat 16-Lucie Safarova 6-4 7-5

5-Maria Sharapova beat Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 6-4 7-6(2)

8-Jelena Jankovic beat Sloane Stephens 7-6(4) 6-4           

4-Agnieszka Radwanska beat Sabine Lisicki 6-1 6-1

12-Caroline Wozniacki beat 6-Angelique Kerber 7-5 6-2

9-Ana Ivanovic beat Svetlana Kuznetsova 6-2 2-6 6-3       

Elina Svitolina beat 15-Carla Suarez Navarro 4-6 6-4 6-4   

Day Four

Serena Ekes Past Stosur; Svitolina Upsets Kvitova; Kuznetsova Dismisses Bouchard August 13, 2014 Cincinnatti, Ohio - World No.1 Serena Williams survived a tough battle with Aussie Sam Stosur, winning 7-6(7), 7-6(7) in this second round matchup.


The 2013 finalist battled back from 0-4 in the first set tiebreak and 4-6 in the second set tiebreak to clinch her eighth win over the former US Open champion. Serena advances to the round of 16 for the fourth time in Cincinnati and is set to face the winner of American qualifier Taylor Townsend versus No.13 seed Flavia Pennetta.


Elina Svitolina served up the biggest upset on the women’s side of the 2014 Western & Southern Open Wednesday, defeating No.3 seed Petra Kvitova 6-2, 7-6(2). The 19-year-old from Ukraine won the first set in just 36 minutes, breaking the Wimbledon champion twice.


The second set proved more of a challenge, as Kvitova got off to a quick 3-0 start. Svitolina rallied back and pushed the lefty to a tiebreak. At 2-2 in the tiebreak, Svitolina won five straight points to close out the match and record her first win against a Top 10 player. She advances to the round of 16 in Cincinnati to face Carla Suarez Navarro, who defeated qualifier Pauline Parmentier 6-3 1-6 6-2.


No. 6 seed Angelique Kerber recorded her sixth win, and third of the year, against Ekaterina Makarova. She defeated the Russian 6-4, 6-1 in just over an hour. The German broke Makarova five times en route to the win and moves through to the round of 16 for the third year in Cincinnati. She is set to face two-time quarterfinalist Caroline Wozniacki.


Former Grand Slam champion Svetlana Kuznetsova stunned No.7 seed Genie Bouchard in their second round matchup, defeating the 20-year-old  6-4, 3-6, 6-2. This marks the second week in a row that the young Canadian makes an early exit. She lost in the second round in Montreal to American qualifier Shelby Rogers. Kuznetsova is in to the round of 16 to meet former World No.1 Ana Ivanovic for the 13th time in their careers. Ivanovic defeated American wild card Christina McHale in straight sets.


Recent Rogers Cup champion Agnieszka Radwanska cruised past Kurumi Nara 6-2 6-2 to set up a third round meeting with Sabine Lisicki who upset No.14 seed Sara Errani 4-6 6-2 7-6(2).

Cincinnati Women’s Singles Second Round Wed Aug 13

1-Serena Williams beat Samantha Stosur 7-6(7) 7-6(7)

Elina Svitolina beat 3-Petra Kvitova 6-2 7-6(2)

6-Angelique Kerber beat Ekaterina Makarova 6-4, 6-1

15-Carla Suarez Navarro beat Pauline Parmentier 6-3, 7-5

Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova beat Karin Knapp 6-1 6-3

Sabine Lisicki beat 14-Sara Errani 4-6, 6-2 7-6(2)

8-Jelena Jankovic beat Annika Beck 6-1 7-6(0)

9-Ana Ivanovic beat Christina McHale 6-4 6-0

16-Lucie Safarova beat Zarina Diyas 6-4 6-2

Sloane Stephens beat Barbora Strycova 7-5 6-1

4-Agnieszka Radwanska beat Kurumi Nara 6-2 6-2

13-Flavia Pennetta beat Taylor Townsend 6-4 6-3

Svetlana Kuznetova beat 7-Eugenie Bouchard 6-4 3-6 6-2

Day Three

Halep, Sharapova, Wozniacki Advance; Safarova Knocks Venus in Cincy Open August 12, 2014 Cincinnati, Ohio - In a late night battle on Center Court the new World No.2, Simona Halep, defeated a tough Kirsten Flipkens 6-4, 6-2 to register only her fourth win at the Western & Southern Open. The Romanian young gun broke Flipkens five times in their 90 minute match. It was no easy feat, with Halep recording nearly twice as many unforced errors as winners.


Lucie Safarova dismantled big serving Venus Williams 6-7(2), 6-3, 6-4 in their first round meeting at the Lindner Family Tennis Center Tuesday. After only notching two points in the first set tiebreak, the No.16 seed broke the seven-time Grand Slam champion four times in the last two sets. It looked as though Safarova had won, serving 5-2 for the match. An overrule kept Venus in it, as she broke the Czech for only the second time in the match and held for 4-5. At the two and a half hour mark, Safarova served out the match and notched her first win over Williams. She advances to the second round for the third time in her career.


In an anticipated second round match-up, former champion Maria Sharapova defeated young Madison Keys 6-1, 3-6, 6-3. In the 30 minute first set, Keys registered nearly double the unforced errors as Sharapova, and was broken two times. The American picked up her game in the second set, hitting twice as many winners as she did in the first set to force the French Open Champion to a deciding set. The final set was all Sharapova, as she breezed in to the third round for the third time in her career.


It only took former World No.1 Caroline Wozniacki 72 minutes to defeat China’s Shuai Zhang 6-2, 6-3. Wozniacki broke Zhang five times en route to the second round win. She is through to the third round for the fourth time in her career and awaits the winner of Ekaterina Makarova versus  Angelique Kerber.


American wild card Christina McHale recorded a tough 6-4, 3-6, 6-1 win over fellow countrywoman Nicole Gibbs in their first round match. Gibbs, a Cincinnati native and former NCAA champion, saved six break points in her first four service games of the match and clinched the first set in 46 minutes. McHale came out firing in the second and third sets, breaking Gibbs five times en route to the win.


Earlier in the day, defending champion Victoria Azarenka withdrew from the 2014 tournament with a right knee injury. “This is probably the biggest disappointment, to not be able to play in front of this amazing crowd,” said Azarenka. The former Grand Slam Champion says she will be ready to compete in the US Open.

Cincinnati Open Women's Singles First Round Tuesday Aug 12

R2: 5-Maria Sharapova beat Madison Keys 6-1 3-6 6-3                

Sloane Stephens beat Andrea Petkovic 6-3 6-3                  

Svetlana Kuznetsova beat Camila Giorgi 6-4 6-7(4) 6-3         

Sabine Lisicki beat Roberta Vinci 6-3 2-6 6-2                

Annika Beck beat Garbine Muguruza Blanco 6-3 2-6 6-3         

14-Sara Errani beat Yanina Wickmayer 7-5 3-6 7-6(2)          

Barbora Strycova beat Mona Barthel 7-5 6-0

16-Lucie Safarova beat Venus Williams 6-7(2) 6-3 6-4   

Ekaterina Makarova beat Daniela Hantuchova 6-2 6-2         

Zarina Diyas beat Irina Begu 7-6(4) 7-6(5)              

15-Carla Suarez Navarro beat Tsvetana Pironkova 6-3 1-6 6-2 

Christina Mchale beat Nicole Gibbs 4-6 6-3 6-1                   

Kurumi Nara beat Romina Oprandi 6-0 6-2

Day Two

Ivanovic, Wozniacki Win Openers; Keys Eliminates Cornet, Townsend Wins

Wozniacki continues good form. Photo by Ian Johnson August 11, 2014 Cincinnati, Ohio - 2010 semifinalist Ana Ivanovic registered her 43rd win of 2014, defeating Sorana Cirstea 6-1, 7-5 at the Western & Southern Open Monday.


In their first meeting since 2010, it only took the former World No.1 26 minutes to capture the first set, breaking Cirstea three times en route. The young Romanian put up more of a fight in the second set, but the No.9 seed served out the match to advance to the second round. Ivanovic is set to face the winner of the all-American battle between wild card Christina McHale and qualifier Nicole Gibbs.


Caroline Wozniacki kicked off her 2014 Western & Southern Open title campaign with a 6-2, 6-3 win over Magdalena Rybarikova. It took the two-time quarterfinalist just over 90 minutes to oust Rybarikova. After a quick first set, play was suspended for nearly an hour due to rain. Wozniacki advances to the second round in Cincinnati to face Shuai Zhang, who knocked out qualifier Heather Watson earlier in the day.


Young American Madison Keys came out firing in her first main draw match on Monday, defeating Alize Cornet 6-2, 6-4. Keys, a 19-year-old from Illinois, opened up the match with three breaks to clinch the first set in just 38 minutes. The young gun continued to dominate in the second set against a frustrated Cornet, registering nearly six times as many winners as her opponent and recording her first main draw win in Cincinnati Keys advances to the second round to face former champion Maria Sharapova.


American qualifier Taylor Townsend notched a win in her first main draw match in Cincinnati, defeating Klara Koukalova 6-3, 4-6, 7-5. Townsend, a former ITF World Junior Champion from Chicago, won four straight games after falling behind 2-3 to clinch the first set. Koukalova battled back to take the second, breaking the young American three times. The two exchanged nine breaks in the third set, with Townsend edging out the Czech for the win.

Cincinnati Women's Singles First Round Monday Aug 11

9-Ana Ivanovic beat Sorana Cirstea 6-1 7-5

Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova beat 11-Dominika Cibulkova 6-3 6-3

12-Caroline Wozniacki beat Magdalena Rybarikova 6-2 6-3

13-Flavia Pennetta beat Chanelle Scheepers 6-3 6-7(3) 6-2

Samantha Stosur beat Varvara Lepchenko 6-2 7-5

Pauline Parmentier beat Casey Dellacqua 7-6(4) 6-2     

Karin Knapp beat Belinda Bencic 6-2 7-6(1)            

Taylor Townsend beat Klara Koukalova 6-3 4-6 7-5    

Madison Keys beat Alize Cornet 6-2 6-4                      

Kirsten Flipkens beat Polona Hercog 6-3 6-2            

Zhang Shuai beat Heather Watson 6-3 2-6 7-5               

Elina Svitolina beat Lauren Davis 6-3 6-2

2013 Cincinnati WTA Prmier

Azarenka Overcomes Serena to Win Cincinnati Crown

Photo by Ian Johnson August 18 2013 Cincinnati - Victoria Azarenka beat Serena Williams in an absolute nail-biter in the final of the Western & Southern Open on Sunday, edging the World No.1 in a third set breaker, 26 62 76(6). Azarenka comes away with her third WTA title of the year, having also won the Australian Open and Doha. It was the 17th WTA title of her career, and 16th on hardcourt (Marbella in 2011 was on clay). 


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