SPORTS

Azarenka Too Strong, Back On Top In Beijing

With her lethal combination of power and consistency, World No.1 Victoria Azareanka was just too solid for Maria Sharapova in the final of the China Openon Sunday evening in Beijing, completely outclassing the World No.2, 6-3 6-1, to conquer the prestigious Premier Mandatory tournament.

Djokovic captures third straight Beijing title

Novak Djokovic won his third straight China Open title on Sunday. The top seed recorded his sixth straight victory over third-seeded Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 7-6(4), 6-2 in one hour and 42 minutes for the 32nd trophy of his career (32-19 in finals). It was his 40th hard-court match win of the season, according to atpworldtour.com.Djokovic is now 14-0 lifetime at the ATP World Tour 500 hard-court tournament in Beijing. It was the fifth time he has three-peated at a tournament (also Australian Open, Dubai, Miami and Canada).Djokovic earned USD530,570 in prize money and 500 South African Airways ATP Ranking points to increase his lead to 1,490 points over Roger Federer (8,920) in the South African Airways ATP Rankings Race To London.Tsonga, who is hoping to join Djokovic at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals in London next month, received USD 239,200 and 300 points after competing in his 15th ATP World Tour final (9-6 overall).Tsonga got off to a strong start, with an early service break, but Djokovic worked his way back into a high-quality first set. At 5-5, the clash was in the balance, but Djokovic stepped up in the tie-break to open up a 3-0 lead. Tsonga fought back, but he hit a backhand slice into the net to hand Djokovic the 65-minute opener.In the second set, Djokovic converted the first of his two break point opportunities at 1-1, 15/40, when Tsonga hit a forehand wide. Tsonga was broken again to 15 at 1-3, when he struck a forehand into the net. Djokovic went onto capture his fourth title of the season and improved to a 65-11 match record.Tsonga is now 1-9 against Top 10 opponents this year. His last win over Djokovic came in January 2010 in the Australian Open quarter-finals. “I think it was a good match,” said Tsonga. “I missed maybe something in the middle of the first set. I was a break up, and I was playing well. But then he played solid. It was really difficult to control him. I just tried to play my game, to be aggressive, but against a player like this, for the moment, my level is not high enough, and it’s not enough to beat him. “I’m happy because I played good tennis here. It was a great tournament for me. I hope I will continue to improve like this and I will try another time to beat these guys next week.”In Tsonga’s last tournament, he retained the Moselle Open title in Metz (d. Seppi) on 23 September. He has a 48-18 season record (29-9 on hard courts).


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