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Taiwan's Hsieh wins Guangzhou Open

2012/09/22 21:37:51

Taipei, Sept. 22 (CNA) Taiwan's Hsieh Su-wei won her second WTA Tour title of the year when she defeated Laura Robson of Britain 6-3, 5-7, 6-4 in the Guangzhou International Women's Open on Saturday.

Hsieh, ranked 53rd, took two hours and 48 minutes to beat Robson, who is ranked 74th, at the US$220,000 tournament.

Hsieh made a promising start in the first set and had a chance to wrap up the match but she failed to maintain her momentum after the first set and missed five match points in the ninth game of the second set.

The 18-year-old Robson had a lead of 3-0 in the final set but Hsieh managed to steady herself and reeled off five straight games to claim her fourth women's singles champion in this season.

Having started the year ranked 172nd in singles, the 26-year-old Hsieh surged in the rankings in February when she reached the semifinals of the PTT Pattaya Open and then won the BMW Malaysian Open.

Hsieh also won an ITF event in Wenshan in April and reached the round of 32 at Wimbledon before losing to Maria Sharapova.

Her victory at a lower-tier International Tennis Federation US$100,000 tournament in Ningbo, China last week helped vault her to 53rd in the world, the best singles ranking in a career that was previously more distinguished for doubles.

Whether she won or lost at the Guangzhou Open, Hsieh was expected to move inside the top 50 in the world rankings for the first time ever. Her world ranking stood at 215th at this time last year.

"Moving up my rank into the top 50 by the end of this year was my goal this season," she said. " But I made it even before the Guangzhou tournament."

Robson, the first British women to enter a WTA final in 22 years, reached the round of 16 at the U.S. Open with wins over Kim Clijsters and Li Na and won the silver medal with her countryman Andy Murray in the mixed doubles event in the London Olympics this summer.

(By Lung Po-an and Maia Huang)