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Zvonareva beats Ivanovic in final

Vera Zvonareva
Zvonareva's conservative tactics paid dividends

Fourth seed Vera Zvonareva fought her way to the biggest win of her career with a 7-6 (7-5) 6-2 defeat of Ana Ivanovic in the Indian Wells final.

Both players had to contest with strong winds which at times gave the match an almost farcical edge when they served.

The Russian's decision to stay deep on the baseline proved well-judged as she sneaked through a first set tie-break.

After a break in the first game of the second, fifth-seeded Ivanovic's confidence gradually ebbed away.


The pair initially traded tentative service games as they struggled with the sporadic gusts before Ivanovic threatened to separate them in the twelfth game.

Zvonareva was required to save three set points as the Serbian world number seven made headway pressurising her opponent at the net.

But as the difficult conditions continued, Zvonareva's more conservative tactics paid dividends with Ivanovic struggling to control her driving groundstrokes.

The tie-break swung back and forth before Ivanovic, facing her first set point, powered a forehand into the net to surrender the opener.

She immediately strengthened the spirits of her vocal supporters with a break in the first game of the second set, but failed to put up much resistance as Zvonareva rattled off six successive games.

Partly due to the difficult conditions, Ivanovic ended up making 46 unforced errors and five double faults.

Honestly, it was the toughest conditions I ever played in

Ana Ivanovic

"Honestly, it was the toughest conditions I ever played in," said Ivanovic. "It was just who can handle the conditions better and who can stay mentally tougher through it.

"I tried to go for some shots but it was very hard to adjust to all the wind.

"So many times I just didn't make enough steps to move forward; then the other times I was too much forward and had to move back.

"It was just very hard to judge where the ball would bounce and where the ball will end up."

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see also
Indian Wells photos
18 Mar 09 |  Tennis
Kuznetsova suffers shock defeat
14 Mar 09 |  Tennis

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