Daria Kasatkina wins first WTA title in teenage Charleston final


Russian Daria Kasatkina cruised past fellow 19-year-old Jelena Ostapenko of Latvia 6-3 6-1 in the final of the Volvo Car Open to win her first career title.

The world No.42 Kasatkina calmly used the opportunity Ostapenko’s mounting unforced errors gave her from the middle of the first set onwards and the Latvian’s slump gained momentum in the second set. The 66th-ranked Ostapenko couldn’t adjust to Kasatkina’s game plan and we saw little of her capabilities in this final. For comparison, against fifth seed Caroline Wozniacki in the quarterfinals, the eventual runner-up hit 40 winners to 26 unforced errors, while in the Sunday’s final her 38 unforced errors far outweighed her 25 winners. Kasatkina made 6 winners and 7 unforced errors in the title match.

During the champion’s speech, Kasatkina could barely complete a sentence, while eventually she couldn’t hold her emotions any longer and burst in tears. A lot of credit has to be given to Kasatkina’s coach Vladimir Platenik, whose strategy and encouragement pushed the Russian through moments of crisis this week in Charleston.

En route to the Premier-level trophy which brings $132,380 in prize money, junior Roland Garros champion Kasatkina defeated Montenegrin Danka Kovinic in the first round, then Olympic gold medalist Monica Puig in the second round, ninth seed Daria Gavrilova in the third round, tenth seed Irina-Camelia Begu in the quarterfinals, Laura Siegemund in the semis and finally her peer Ostapenko. (photo: Jimmie48)


  1. Both of these women’s definatly deserved it and I wish both could come out as champion, but kudos to Kasatkina defeating all these tough opponents. She had beaten world number one Kerber twice, and after that she had mediocre results, but after all that she won a BIG PREMIER EVENT ! showing us that she can be a champion and a future number one contender!

  2. Nathan C., I really enjoyed watching this final between two very promising young players and junior Grand Slam champions. Kasatkina really deserved this victory, even though Ostapenko underperformed in the final. To win your maiden title at a Premier event is a huge deal!

  3. I actually watched this final and Dashka was really playing well. Jelena was on her third final, first on clay. She should have a mental advantage but in terms of experience in bigger matches, Daria got it. She went for her shots and she definitely loves clay. I love her speech. Very classy. Jelena was a bit disappointing. She didn’t even congratulated Daria. It was Junior RG champion vs Junior Wimbledon champion. I see a bright future for both girls.


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