Welcome to the new Independent website. We hope you enjoy it and we value your feedback. Please contact us here.


Brave Watson lets the lead slip after heat takes its toll

Heather Watson's hopes of a third WTA quarter-final of the year ended with a three-set defeat by Canada's Stéphanie Dubois at the Citi Open in Maryland on Thursday.

The British No 3 looked on course for victory when she led by a set and a break but, with temperatures soaring, she could not close it out. Dubois saved nine of 10 break points in a tight second set before dominating the decider to win 3-6, 7-5, 6-1.

Watson is ranked 13 places higher than Dubois, at 104 in the world. The 19-year-old from Guernsey had won their only previous meeting 6-1, 6-0 earlier this year and took five straight games on her way to securing the opening set. But Dubois, 24, held on gamely in a tense second set before reeling off six games in a row from 5-5 as she went on to win in a gruelling two hours and 40 minutes, which included a break before the decider under the extreme heat rule.

Dubois said after her win: "I never gave up. She was playing well. I stayed aggressive and I managed to play more aggressively in the second set. She is consistent so I knew I had to make something."