Sabalenka beats Barty to win Madrid Open title

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In their third meeting over the course of five weeks, Aryna Sabalenka overcame a mid-match slump and turned into higher gear in the last two games to defeat Ashleigh Barty 6-0 3-6 6-4 in the final of the Mutua Madrid Open.

The fifth-seeded Sabalenka absolutely dominated the first set. The Belarusian hit 11 winners to just one unforced error and faced no break points as she served the top seed a bagel in 25 minutes.

In the second set, Sabalenka leveled from 0-2 to 2-2, but then she allowed to be broken again in the crucial fifth game and Barty marched into the decider.

The third set was steady until 4-4, when Sabalenka won two games in a row without dropping a point.

The 23-year-old Sabalenka, who had conceded only 18 games in her five matches preceding the final, the fewest of any Madrid finalist in the tournament’s history, ended Barty’s 16-match winning streak on European red clay.

By lifting the title, the 10th in her career, Sabalenka will crack the Top 5 for the first time, overtaking Sofia Kenin at No.4. Barty will remain the WTA No.1 after the Madrid Open, taking her total number of weeks at the summit to 75.


1 COMMENT

  1. Congratulations, Aryna for staying the course and not letting Barty’s comeback rattle you. This will be a great rivalry in the future. BTW, loved her little dance at the end.

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