Tianjin Open: Alison Riske beats Belinda Bencic to win maiden WTA title in China
Last Updated: 12/10/14 4:46pm
Alison Riske claimed her maiden WTA title with a straight sets win over Swiss teenager Belinda Bencic in the final of the inaugural Tianjin Open in China.
The US sixth seed won through 6-3 6-4 over third-seeded Bencic, who was also playing in her first final.
Bencic qualified for the final after second seed Peng Shuai was forced to retire from Saturday's semi-final with a back complaint.
Had she won, she would have become the youngest WTA title winner since Austria's Tamira Paszek was victorious in Portoroz, Slovenia in 2006.
I was here by myself, which made it even more special, just to know that I was able to do it by myself. I hope I can keep up the momentum.
Instead, the 24-year-old Atlanta, Georgia resident Riske surged to a 4-1 lead after breaking Bencic twice early on but the teen broke back and took the score to 4-3.
With her lead cut to just a single game and Bencic threatening to make a comeback, Riske managed to hold on to her remaining service games and break Bencic again in the last game to win the set 6-3.
Bencic was broken early on again in the second set but broke back and levelled the score at 4-4. However, Riske won a break in the tenth game and went on to take the set 6-4 and wrap up victory in 81 minutes.
"It's a huge accomplishment for me to win my first WTA title," the world No 62 said after downing the 17-year-old, who was also seeking a first WTA title.
"I was here by myself, which made it even more special, just to know that I was able to do it by myself. I hope I can keep up the momentum."