Caroline Wozniacki saw off Elena Dementieva in a tough battle to win the Pan Pacific Open women’s tennis tournament in Tokyo. The Danish top seed, who crashed out in her opening matches in her previous two visits to Tokyo, made it third time lucky with a 1-6, 6-2, 6-3 victory. Wozniacki said of her win over the Russian: “I knew it was going to be tough. We always have tough matches. “But I’m just so happy to win another tournament. This is my 11th.”
Seventh seed Dementieva, the Olympic champion, got off to a flying start, racing to a 4-0 first set lead with an array of winners from the baseline. Wozniacki was short of ammunition and double-faulted to lose the set. But she made a conscious effort to be more positive from that point on, and it served her well. After missing two break points in the first game of the second set, Wozniacki took a 2-1 lead when Dementieva hit a backhand into the net and went on to win the set. The final set featured an exchange of breaks, but the crucial blow was landed when Wozniacki added another in the seventh game to move up 4-3 as a Dementieva’s forehand found the net.
The two-hour match came to an abrupt end two games later when the Russian double-faulted twice in a row on match point. “In the second set, I stepped up a little bit and I just kept fighting,” said Wozniacki after capturing her fifth title of the season, following triumphs at Ponte Vedra Beach, Copenhagen, Montreal and New Haven.