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Sunday, 16 February, 2003, 16:09 GMT
Venus sparkles in Antwerp
Sunday's WTA round-up

Proximus Diamond Games

Venus Williams overpowered Kim Clijsters 6-2 6-4 to successfully defend her Diamond Games title in Antwerp.

Venus Williams shows off the diamond racquet trophy
Williams shows off the diamond racquet trophy

The world number two earned victory in 80 minutes to clinch her first title of the year, having not dropped a set all week.

"I felt calm and ready to do my thing," said Williams.

"I was able to serve well, I had fewer double faults and always managed to get the point. I made fewer mistakes."

The winning trophy is a $1m diamond-encrusted trophy racquet.

Having now won it twice, should Williams win the title in any of the next three years, she will get to keep the racquet.

Clijsters is ranked just one place below Williams but could find no answer to her opponent's booming serve and powerful groundstrokes.

The racquet is superb and you can bet I'll be back to try and win it

Venus Williams
An entertaining set saw the Belgian Clijsters delight the 14,400-capacity crowd by earning the first break point in the third game but she could not convert it.

Williams had chances of her own in the next game but had to wait until the sixth game for the breakthrough.

The American closed out the set in 29 minutes but then a lapse of concentration allowed Clijsters to break at the beginning of the second.

Williams immediately hit back, ruthlessly exploiting the weak serve of Clijsters by breaking to love.

The Belgian then began to get flustered and started spraying the balls long and wide.

In front an increasingly subdued crowd, Williams rushed into a 4-1 lead before being pegged back to 5-4.

But Clijsters again faltered on her own serve and Williams took full advantage to clinch victory.

"She was simply far too strong on the important points," said Clijsters. "Her first serves made a lot of difference."

A delighted Venus issued a challenge to her sister, world number one Serena Williams, after the match.

"If you want to challenge me here, Serena, if you are watching, come on," said Venus.


Qatar Open

Second seed Anastasia Myskina beat fifth seed Elena Likhovtseva 6-3 6-1 in the first all-Russian final on the WTA Tour.

The 21-year-old Myskina outplayed her more experienced rival to clinch her third Tour title in under an hour.

The world number 11 broke 27-year-old Likhovtseva in the sixth game, only to be broken straight back.

But Myskina again broke back and held on to take the set.

In the second set, Myskina stepped up the pace, breaking three times to wrap up victory.

All the action from the WTA Tour this week

w/e 16 Feb 2003

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