Top-seeded Elina Svitolina successfully defended her Dubai title to continue to keep herself in contention for the world number one slot. It was her second title of the year with an emphatic 6-4 6-0 victory against the unseeded 20-year-old Daria Kasatkina for the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships trophy.
I’m really happy with my performance today, all week I handled the pressure so well, coming here as the defending champion I had no expectations, I just wanted to take it one match at a time, Elina Svitolina
“Coming here I didn’t have any expectations and here I am holding this trophy again,” the Ukrainian said.
The 23-year-old drew 34 errors from her opponent, and bageled the youngster in the second set as the Russian tried to raise her game and pressure the defending champion
Kasatkina looked to be feeling the effects of a long three-set semi-final 24-hours earlier when she upset of No. 2 seed Garbine Muguruza 3-6 7-6(13-11) 6-1 having also put out Jo Konta in second round 4-6 7-6(6) 6-2.
“I’m really happy with my performance today, all week I handled the pressure so well, coming here as the defending champion I had no expectations, I just wanted to take it one match at a time,” Svitolina, who had beaten the Russian in their two previous meetings, said. “My game plan today was to keep the ball in the court, make her rally. I am pleased with how I handled everything.”
It was Svitolina’s second title of the year having won Brisbane last month and has improved her record in finals to an impressive 11-2.