Lucie Safarova entered the final of the Qatar Total Open with a discouraging 0-6 head-to-head record against Victoria Azarenka, who also boasted a 14-match winning streak at the tournament, having won the title in 2012 and 2013, while skipping the 2014 edition. However, the world No.15 Czech absolutely ignored the stats and erased the two-time Doha champion from the final in straight sets. Note, in all of their previous meetings she had managed to win just one set!
In both sets of the Saturday’s final Safarova was the first one to score a break and the 28-year-old had no trouble consolidating them with successful service games. In the first set Azarenka did manage to get things back on serve, breaking back for 3-3 and even going 4-3 up, but Safarova didn’t let the set slip through her fingers and recorded one more break to strengthen her position, while in the second set she saved all the four break points she faced and never allowed the Belarusian to take charge. Final result: 6-4 6-3.
En route to her sixth and biggest career title, Lucie first took out Samantha Stosur, then fifth seed Ekaterina Makarova in the second round, sixth seed Andrea Petkovic in the quarterfinals, ninth seed Carla Suarez Navarro in the semis, and finally Vika, who had an overall fantastic tournament and great launch of cooperation with coach Wim Fissette. The champion has won $124,000 in prize money and will now climb to a career-high ranking of No.11.
Safarova’s pink winning outfit: the Nike Spring Advantage Printed SS Top and the Spring Victory Printed Skirt. In charge of Safarova’s comfortable movement were the Nike Zoom Vapor 9.5 Tour shoes. (photo: TennisTV)