Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Sports Digest: Venus Williams Wins Event in China

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Sports Digest: Venus Williams Wins Event in China

Article excerpt

Venus Williams wins tournament in China

Top-seeded Venus Williams beat Karolina Pliskova 7-5, 7-6 (6) to win the WTA Elite Trophy on Sunday in Zhuhai, China.

Pliskova had a set point at 6-5 in the tiebreaker but Williams hit back-to-back forehand winners to close out the win.

"Seven weeks here in Asia and now I feel like it's my home," Williams said. "I'm so excited to win the first trophy in Zhuhai. All the players felt so welcome here and we appreciated all of the enthusiasm."

With her third win of the year, Williams returns to the top 10 for the first time in more than four years.

The tournament brought together 11 of the top players who did not qualify for last week's WTA Finals in Singapore.

Williams raced out to an early 4-1 lead in the first set but the third-seeded Pliskova fought back to 4-all before Williams took the first set.

Pliskova found her game in the second set and went up 4-2 but Williams got back on serve and forced the tiebreaker.

Williams, a seven-time Grand Slam winner and former top-ranked player, has enjoyed a return to form this year, winning also at Auckland and Wuhan.

It's the first time she's won three WTA titles in a season since 2008 and the 41 matches she's won are the most in a season since winning 50 in 2007.

Djokovic routs Murray * Novak Djokovic's relentless desire for tennis perfection is pushing him to a consistently brilliant level, one that proved far too high for Andy Murray.

The top-ranked Serb made light work of Murray in the Paris Masters final, beating the second-seeded Briton 6-2, 6-4 for his 10th title of an outstanding year that now includes a record six Masters titles to add to his three Grand Slam wins.

With 10 titles in 2015, he is four ahead of Roger Federer. Djokovic now has won 26 Masters events altogether, two more than Federer and one behind leader Rafael Nadal.

"If you are going for the perfection, you might reach excellence," the 10-time Grand Slam champion said after dispatching Murray in 1 hour, 33 minutes. "That's the kind of mind set I have."

The only major he did not win this year was the French Open, losing the final to Stan Wawrinka, and it remains the only big trophy missing in his fast-growing collection of 58 career titles. …

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