The 20-year-old American Sofia Kenin has made sure to kick off 2019 season in a perfect way, winning two WTA titles in the opening two weeks and cracking the top-40 on the WTA ranking list ahead of the Australian Open! A week after she won the first WTA doubles crown with Eugenie Bouchard in Auckland, the Pembroke Pines native grabbed the maiden WTA singles title as well, demolishing Anna Karolina Schmiedlova 6-3, 6-0 in 71 minutes.
Kenin won their previous match in New Haven last year but she had to work much harder in that one than today, overcoming a little bit slower start and never looking back, rattling off nine straight games to cross the finish line in style.
Serving at staggering 86%, Sofia defended eight out of nine break points she had to play against, all of those in the opening set, and she stole 60% of the return points against the rival who faded from the court in the middle of the first set, never to return.
The Slovak player faced nine break points as well and unlike Sofia she got broken six times, laying her weapons down and allowing Sofia to become the first American champion here since Amy Frazier in 2004. After three great holds on both sides, Kenin fends off three break chances in game four before scoring a break in the following game after a beautiful forehand cross court winner.
The youngster broke at love in game five but she was broken as well a few minutes later when Schmiedlova converted the sixth break chance to level the score at 3-3. Sofia was the only player on the court in the rest of the set, though, winning 12 of the last 16 points and taking the set after a backhand error from Anna Karolina in game nine, hoping for more of the same in set number two.
Carried by this momentum, Kenin earned a break in game two of the second set thanks to a forehand winner to seize full control, breaking again at 15 in game four and sealing the deal with another one in game six following yet another error from her opponent.
Sofia Kenin (USA) vs Anna Karolina Schmiedlova (SVK) 6-3 6-0