Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Henin Wins Slam Seven in Style

Wolrd no.1 Justin Henin clinches her second US Open Women’s Singles in the most impressive fashion without dropping a set in the entire tournament (only Serena Williams had a set point against Henin in the quarterfinals). In the final Henin completely outplayed an erratic Svetlana Kuznetsova 6-1, 6-3 in an hour and 22 minutes. Henin closed the match with a delicate lob poised at the net.

At the US Open, Henin could not have had a tougher draw where she had to face the current Australian Open champion Serena Williams in the quarters and Wimbledon Champion Venus Williams in the semifinals. Henin became the first player since Martina Hingis to beat both the Williams sisters in the same grand slam tournament. Hingis had accomplished the feat in the 2001 Australian Open where she beat Serena in the quarters and Venus in the semis, before losing to Jennifer Capriati in the finals.

By winning the title, Henin replicated her success in 2003, when she won the French Open and the US Open (beating now-retired Kim Clijsters in both the finals). She is now a very clear favorite to clinch the year-end number one ranking as she has a lead of more than 1400 points over the no.2 ranked Kuznetsova (her career-best ranking). The tournament has also been rewarding for the new Russian star, Anna Chakvetadze who reached her first semifinals at a slam at New York before losing to Kuznetsova. This semifinal appearance along with her successful run in the US Open series where she won two titles has helped Chakvetadze reached her highest world ranking of five, making her the third Russian in the top 5.

The tournament also saw strong performances from teens Agnieszka Radwanska (beats 2006 US Open Champion Maria Sharapova in the third round) and promising Hungarian Agnes Szavay who reached the quarterfinals before losing to Kuznetsova.


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