Jessica Pegula dedicated an emotional message after winning the Korea Open, the country where her mother, Kim Pegula, hails from.
Despite not originally planning to participate in the Korea Open, Pegula decided to enter at the last minute following her early exit from the China Open. She received a wildcard entry from the organizers and entered the tournament as the top seed.
The American, who has had a great year, lived up to her billing as the favorite and won the tournament without much difficulty, defeating China's Yue Yuan 6-2, 6-3 in the final. Along the way, she had already overcome Viktoria Kuzmova, Ashlyn Krueger, Clare Liu, and Yanina Wickmayer.
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With her fantastic week in Korea, Pegula secured her fourth career title and her second of the year. She also maintained her World No. 4 ranking, despite the pressure from Elena Rybakina, who had been closing the gap in the WTA Ranking.
Pegula used her social media to send a message to her fans and, in particular, to the people who supported her in Korea. She also mentioned her connection with the Asian country, where her mother is from:
“This one is extra special. I am half Korean. I don’t speak and I am still learning about my culture (my mom was adopted and left on a doorstep of a Korean police station) but I have been overwhelmed by the support from Korean fans,” Pegula said.
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“My mom visited her orphanage here when I played this event 4 years ago. It was the first time she felt open about learning about her past,” she added.
Her health struggles the past year made this tournament a goal to win. It has been such an honor to play in front of you,” world No. 4 concluded.
With this result, Pegula has essentially closed out her calendar, and her next and final challenge will be at the WTA Finals. This will be her second participation, as she was there last year but fell in the round-robin phase, suffering three losses and no wins.