Wild-card Ivanovic ends two-year wait for title with win over Schnyder

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The Independent Online

Ana Ivanovic routed Patty Schnyder 6-1, 6-2 in the final of the Generali Ladies yesterday to win her first WTA Tour title in two years and her ninth overall.

The 22-year-old Serb won her last tournament at the same event in 2008 after taking the French Open title and becoming the top-ranked player for 12 weeks.

"Winning again after two years is so wonderful, just unbelievable," Ivanovic said. "I have been waiting so long for this and I worked hard to achieve it."

Ivanovic, now ranked No 29, was playing her first final in 19 months. Initially, she had not planned to appear at the $220,000 (£138,000) indoor event but accepted a late wild card after Serena Williams pulled out with a foot injury.

"I felt very well and hit the balls well," said Ivanovic, who did not drop a set during the tournament. "Patty played well all week so I tried to put her under pressure from the start. That paid off."

Schnyder, ranked No 47, was playing her third final in Linz, having also finished runner-up in 2005 and 2007.

"Respect for Ana, there was just nothing in it for me," the Swiss veteran said. "She took the balls so early and placed them so well, there was just no chance to find for my game."

It was Schnyder's second final of the season after Budapest in July, where she lost to Agnes Szavay.

"I am disappointed but it still was a great week," added Schnyder, who defeated former champion Daniela Hantuchova and Andrea Petkovic en route to the final. "My draw was not easy so I was happy to stay in the tournament until the end."

Ivanovic dominated the match from the start. She was broken once but won all three of Schnyder's service games. Schnyder won just five points on serve.

Ivanovic raced to a 5-0 lead in the second set when Schnyder broke her and then held serve for the only time in the match. She finally closed out the win with an ace on her second match point.

Meanwhile, Tamarine Tanasugarn beat Kimiko Date Krumm 7-5, 6-7, 6-1 in the Japan Women's Open final, spoiling the 40-year-old Japanese player's attempt to become the oldest singles title winner in WTA Tour history.

The 33-year-old Thai broke the sixth-seeded Date Krumm twice in the third set to take control in a match that lasted three hours, seven minutes.