Kateryna Bondarenko is New Singles Champion at Tashkent Open

30 September 2017

Tashkent, September 30: Kateryna Bondarenko of Ukraine upset second seeded   Timea Babos of Hungary to win the 19th edition of Tashkent Open WTA Championships being played at the Olympic tennis School in Tashkent.

In the singles final the world no ranked 133  Ukrainian  Bondarenko upset the 52nd ranked  Babos 6-4,6-4 in 1 hour and 26 minutes to be crowned the new singles champion.  The 280 points she earned here will propel  Bondarenko back into the top 100 (she will be ranked 86)  while Babos will move to around 41  with the 180 points she received as the finalist

Going into the match tied at  1-1  in career match records,  Babos   looked the favorite going into the finals.,  not having lost a set in the tournament .  But  Babos  looked jaded  today  , was broken in the seventh game by Bondarenko to go up 4-3 , both players then held on to serves , Bondarenko double faulted at her first set point in the 10th game , but manged to hold on to her serve  and win the first set in 39  mins.

Bondarenko started strongly in the second set breaking Babos in the 1st and the 3rd games to race to a 3-0 lead , but Bondarenko lost her serve in the 4th game but broke back immediately in the fifth game to go up 4-1.

Babos looked like coming back breaking Bondarenko in the sixth game , and holding on to her seventh game to  narrow lead to 4-3 , after  two breaks the  31 year old Ukrainian held on to her serve in the 8th game and went up 5-3 , The Ukrainian missed out on  a set point in the ninth game as Babos served strongly to save the game.

Bondarenko who has never gone past the quarterfinals at Tashkent before held on to her serve in the 10th game and a Babos forehand error saw her raise her hands and fall on to the ground winning her second WTA Title of her career  exactly after nine years later ( she had won her only title at Birmingham in 2008)

"  I was very tired after three matches yesterday , but  I told myself it's the last day and I need to give it all I had , said Bondarenko at the post match media Conference . The win here   means a lot  ,  I was practicing every day , my coach who came with me for last two weeks helped me ", she added

I had been quarter finalist twice here  so have some experience of playing here  , But the draw here was  tough with  six champions participating   .  I was playing well right from first round. and would treat the  final as the best match I played as I could finish it two sets.

I've been here since Wednesday last week and practicing , but never thought about  the title, but today when I was leading  , I  thought I had a realistic chance to win the title , I struggled with my serve in the second set but managed  ,  I'm truly happy to be back in top 100 after going out after Wimbledon added  Bondarenko ,

Bondarenko after a win hugged her daughter who kissed her on her cheek , when asked what her daughter told her  , Bondarenko said "  Go win trophy for me because yesterday , she saw trophy  in shop  and wanted me to win it for her , so I will gift my trophy to her.",

The Singles Winner Bondarenko got  $43000 and 280 WTA points , while  the finalist  Babos had to be content with  $21400  and 180 WTA points.

The trophies and the traditional embroidered Chapan were presented to the Winner and Runner -up at the hands of Deputy Mayor of Tashkent City Abdurahimova Farida Yuldashevna , The Deputy chairman of the Uzbekistan state physical culture and sport committee Juraev Iskander Tuhtamuradovich , Secretary General of the National Olympic Committee  of Uzbekistan Kasimov Oybek Omilovich ,

The WTA Supervisor Cristina Romero , Tournament Director Valera Lim were present on the occasion.