World Number 153, Svetlana Kuznetsova and the eighth-seeded American, Madison Keys played their first-ever final match in Cincinnati. Keys knocked down Kuznetsova 7-5, 7-6(5) to lift the biggest title of her career at Western & Southern Open 2019. With this win, Keys is back inside the top-ten rankings and she will be a top-ten seed at the US Open 2019.
It was Svetlana Kuznetsova who made a courageous start by toppling the home favorite, Madison Keys in her opening service game. Keys came up with aces on her serve and her second serve consistency was poor.
While serving at 3-2, Kuznetsova earned a chance to make a love hold, but the game turned out to be an elongated one. Madison Keys came across two break chances and fended them off, with the Russian’s dictation in the set, Kuznetsova led by 4-2.
A chance for a love hold
Tough game for Keys
An error-strewn game from Keys gave Kuznetsova break chances, by wrestling to hold her serve, the American crushed a down the line backhand for a hold at 4-3. Madison Keys could exercise her control on the serves, and finally, she could compensate for her opening game loss when Kuznetsova was serving for the set at 5-4.
Back on serve Maddie!
After balancing the set at 5-5 with a scintillating backhand down the line, she produced a hold at 6-5. With four consecutive games and the fightback, Madison Keys sealed the opening set 7-5.
What a comeback!
Svetlana Kuznetsova again was leading up a break in the second set. Keys could produce love holds and her ace count was off the charts and proved that she was very much in the set. With Kuznetsova serving and volleying her lead in the set remained untouched.
However, Madison’s winner count in the match elevated to number 40, when she slammed a forehand winner for a break chance while the Russian was serving for the set. Once again, it was the repeat of the previous set as Keys stabilized the set at 5-5.
When Sveta serves for the set…
Leading the set into the tiebreaker, and both the women were at par, and it was Madison Keys who was destined to lift the title on the Mason court.