Sun | Dec 11, 2016

Serena ends long wait for Cincinnati title

Published:Monday | August 18, 2014 | 12:00 AM
Serena Williams poses with the championship trophy after defeating Ana Ivanovic from Serbia 6-4, 6-1, in the final match at the Western & Southern Open tennis tournament yesterday. - AP

MASON, Ohio (AP):

Serena Williams finally got the one that always managed to somehow slip away. And she did it so convincingly that she's thinking another title could be coming soon.

Williams needed only 62 minutes to beat Ana Ivanovic 6-4, 6-1 yesterday in the Western & Southern Open for a personal breakthrough. She'd never even reached the finals in Cincinnati until last year, when she fell apart and lost to Victoria Azarenka on a third-set tiebreaker.

No wobbles this time. After getting broken in the first game, she took control with her serve and took advantage of Ivanovic's sloppy play, improving to 5-0 in finals this year.

best performance of summer

"Definitely my best performance of the summer," she said. "Hopefully not the last.

"This is definitely a level that can take me to the (US Open) title. I still have a lot of work to do. It's definitely a better level than I've played all year, to be honest."

Ivanovic was treated for a stomach ailment during her nearly three-hour win over Maria Sharapova in the semi-finals on Saturday night. She didn't have much left against Williams, who dominated with her serve. Williams had 12 aces.

"Only?" Ivanovic said. "It felt like way more."

The only other event that Williams has played six times without a title is Sydney. She finally got her win in Cincinnati with the help of a good matchup. Williams is 7-1 in her career against Ivanovic, with the only loss coming at the Australian Open this year.

Despite the loss, Ivanovic will move back into the top 10 in the WTA rankings with her strong showing in Cincinnati.

"It's the biggest final I've been in in a while. It feels good to be part of it," she said. "There are still a few points in my game that I feel I need to work on for the US Open and also for the end of season. Definitely exciting times."

In the men's championship, Roger Federer got his unprecedented sixth title in Cincinnati, overcoming one bad set to pull it off. Federer beat David Ferrer 6-3, 1-6, 6-2 to win the Western & Southern Open, a tournament in which he's usually at his best. He's 6-0 in finals, with his six wins a tournament record.