Maria Sakkari secures first WTA 1000 Title at Guadalajara Open with convincing victory over Dolehide

ATP
Sunday, 24 September 2023 at 09:31
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Maria Sakkari won her first WTA 1000 Guadalajara Open title against Caroline Dolehide with a score of 7-5, 6-3.
Sakkari had a solid week in Guadalajara, reaching her second final in the tournament, following her defeat in 2022 against Jessica Pegula. The Greek player has been flawless and has not dropped a set in her victories over Storm Hunter (6-2, 6-4), Camila Giorgi (6-2, 6-2), Emiliana Arango (6-3, 6-4), and Caroline Garcia (6-3, 6-0).
The second seed entered the final as the clear favorite due to her extensive experience in important tournaments, with over 60 wins in WTA 1000 events, including seven semifinals and two finals in the category, although she had never won a title before.
Her opponent, Caroline Dolehide, arrived at the tournament as a relatively unknown player and had the best week of her career, reaching her first professional final. She began the tournament as the world No. 111 and surprised higher-ranked players such as Ekaterina Aleksandrova (20th), Martina Trevisan (54th), and former Grand Slam champion Sofia Kenin (53rd).
World No. 9 had no trouble dealing with the nerves of six consecutive lost finals and showcased a high level throughout the week. Sakkari secured the first break in the third game, taking a 3-1 lead. The American player broke back and leveled the score 4-4 on her first opportunity.
With Sakkari leading 6-5 and the tie-break looming, the former world No. 3 earned another break to take the set 7-5.
In the second set, the American player remained resilient, but Sakkari's decisiveness earned her a break in the fifth game, followed by taking a 4-2 lead with her serve. Although Dolehide fought until the end of the match, Sakkari prevailed and ultimately secured the victory with a final break, winning 7-5, 6-3.
This is Maria Sakkari's first WTA 1000 title, breaking her streak of losses in finals, and it marks her second career trophy (her first was at the 2019 Morocco Open). The Greek player solidifies her position as the world No. 6 and enters the race to qualify among the top 8 for the WTA Finals.
Sakkari has made progress in the Race rankings, currently holding the ninth position with 3010 points. In the coming weeks, she will aim to catch up to Ons Jabeur, who currently holds the eighth position with 3318 points.
Both players will be competing in the WTA 1000 event in Beijing starting on October 2nd. However, Sakkari will make a stop in Tokyo before that, as she is registered to play in the WTA 500 tournament that begins this week.

Sakkari d. Caroline Dolehide 7-5 6-3 There aren’t many athletes who connect with fans the way Maria does. Her heart, her humanity, & her passion always shine through. ✅1st title in 4 years & 4 months ✅2nd WTA title ✅1st WTA 1000 title The Great Greek. 🇬🇷🤍

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