Tokyo champion Nadia Petrova won the Tournament of Champions in Sofia today. Petrova, who was seeded 2nd, defeated top seed Caroline Wozniacki 6-2, 6-1 in an hour and 27 minutes. Petrova broke Wozniacki five times, and never let go of her aggressive game, which included repeatedly taking charge at the net. We know what Petrova is capable of, and lately, we've been seeing it again. The Russian veteran has one of the biggest serves on the tour, and--though known for her power--is actually an all-court player.
"Hopefully," the Sofia champion remarked, "with the preparation I'm doing in the off-season for next year, you'll be able to see the old Petrova."
Today's result provides us a two-part cautionary tale: 1. Watch out for WTA 30-year-olds who suddenly get their groove back, and....2. The plan for "new Caroline"?--still not working. The Dane is back in the top 10, but winning only three games in the Sofia final surely isn't how she wanted to end her season
There was another champion named today: Kristina Mladenovic won the first-ever WTA 125 tournament, which was played in Taipei. Mladenovic beat Chang Kai-Chen 6-4, 6-3. Mladenovic, who is 19, reached the third round of the 2012 U.S. Open. The young Frenchwoman also won two WTA doubles titles earlier this year.
Mladenovic, with partner Chan Hao-Ching, also won the Taipei doubles title. The champions defeated Chang and partner Olga Govortsova 5-7, 6-2, 10-8 in the final.
It couldn't have been easy for the crowd to watch the home player take the runner-up trophy in both events.