Tennis: Wozniacki Wins Hong Kong Open, Beats Unyielding Mladenovic

Caroline Wozniacki fought hard to subdue her French challenger Kristina Mladenovic 6-1, 7-4, 6-2 to claim the Hong Kong Open on Sunday.

The former world number one effortlessly took the first set with Mladenovic looking lethargic and limping slightly.

However, the 23-year-old Frenchwoman came out in the second set with her right leg bandaged and renewed focus.

She forced Wozniacki to dive around the court with a combination of drop shots and powerful drives.

The got to to 6-6, with Mladenovic sealing the tie-break 7-4 to level up.

But she was tired out in the third set

The 26-year-old Wozniacki finally sealed victory in the third set as a tired Mladenovic was ultimately unable to match the Dane’s power and consistency.

“I’m really pleased with my week this week — there was some good tennis and long battles,” Wozniacki told reporters.

The Dane called the final a mental battle, as it was unclear to her how badly Mladenovic was hurt.

“It wasn’t easy mentally because sometimes she would look like she couldn’t play.

”And then she would run like Speedy Gonzalez — clearly it’s not that bad if you can run side to side. There was definitely a mental game. I just happened to win it,” she said.

Wozniacki herself has battled back from injury and has had a resurgent run of form in the past two months, reaching the semi-finals of the US Open and winning the Pan Pacific Open in Tokyo.

Still without a Grand Slam title to her name, she said it was her ambition to win one.

“It’s the only thing missing from my CV,” she said.


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