Monday, April 15, 2019

Anisimova, 17, tops Aussie for first WTA title

Amanda Anisimova, shown en route to the Sacramento Challenger title
in 2017, defeated Astra Sharma 4-6, 6-4, 6-1 in Sunday's Bogota final
on the WTA tour. Photo by Rob Vomund
   In 2017, Amanda Anisimova won her first professional singles title in the $60,000 Sacramento Challenger at 15.
   On Sunday, the 17-year-old American earned her first WTA singles crown.
   The sixth-seeded Anisimova, considered a future Grand Slam champion, beat unseeded Astra Sharma of Australia 4-6, 6-4, 6-1 on clay in the Claro Open Colsanitas in Bogota.
   Sharma, a 23-year-old former Vanderbilt star, led by a service break at 3-2 in the second set. However, Anisimova broke right back with the help of three double faults.
   "I think this was a pretty big goal because I overcame so many challenges this week," Anisimova, who reached her first WTA singles final last year in Hiroshima (losing to Hsieh Su-wei), told wtatennis.com. "I'm really happy and proud of myself for how I got through them, and winning my first WTA title means so much."
   Four of Anisimova's five matches, including her last three, went to three sets in Bogota's altitude of 8,660 feet (2,640 meters).
   Anisimova soared 22 places to a career-high No. 54. She is the youngest player in the top 100, exactly three months younger than Iga Swiatek. The 17-year-old Pole jumped to No. 88 after losing to Polona Hercog of Slovenia in the Lugano final on Sunday.
   Sharma, who played No. 1 singles and doubles on the Vanderbilt team that lost to Stanford 4-3 in last year's NCAA final, catapulted 36 spots to No. 102 after her first WTA final.
   Sharma did win a title Sunday, though, as she and compatriot Zoe Hives teamed for their first WTA crown.
   College -- William Genesen defeated Jack Molloy 3-6, 6-4, 6-4 on Court 2 to give No. 12 Stanford (14-5, 3-3 Pacific-12 Conference) a 4-3 victory over No. 41 Cal (11-10, 3-3) on Saturday in Berkeley.
   The Cardinal played without its star, 13th-ranked Axel Geller, for the second consecutive match. Stanford did not disclose the reason.

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