The dominance continued to fly high for Belinda Bencic at the Western & Southern Open Tuesday. The 18 year old added another victim to her list defeating Angelique Kerber 7-5, 6-3 on centre court.
The Rogers Cup champion got back into the competition after having a dream run to victory on Sunday winning her second WTA title this season. She came face to face against Kerber who has won four of her own this year. The two had met just once where the Swiss teen won in straight sets holding Kerber back in a tight second set to move on. With so much attention and her first round against a strong opponent the 18 year old would have to be warmed up and fight fatigue from the start.
Fatigue didn’t show as she gave the German plenty of fight in the first game only to lose it on deuce. Once on serve, the teen showed her power that had less than 48 hours to rest. Bencic took the first game to even the score and show that she is ready for action. Bencic answered on Kerber’s serve earning the break to take the lead. She would go on to win her next two serve while holding the German on serve to lead 5-1 after six decisions. Kerber’s second serve was the major error in her game serving below 30 percent. When it looked as if the Swiss was going to close it out, an eerie moment occurred.
Kerber marched her way back slowly taking the same strategy that had Serena Williams nearly making her way back. It was suddenly a 5-5 tie as Kerber won her four straight with tremendous straight and tricks to press the set onward. It would move in that direction, but with her notice of what was happening; she immediately got back onto a strong offense to win the important pair of victories holding the set. “That was a very difficult situation for me,” Bencic said. “I had 5-1 and I played great but she also started to play better and really went for her shots but then I managed to focus and win my service game to close it out.”
It only took 45 minutes to complete the set in what had both players playing each game quickly. The stats were very close between the two giving the German enough time to make the turnaround in what was becoming a topsy-turvy match. At one point, Kerber’s disastrous second serve improved enough to show that she ad what it took to play on.
Bencic still looked in complete control having her talents scrape away at Kerber who pleaded for her coach’s counsel during the break. It didn’t work as Bencic once against again opened the gap taking a 2-0 before Kerber could strike. Game Three was her point of entry into the set and wouldn’t be the last forcing Bencic into a tradeoff that had her within reach.
Kerber soon made that a reality tying up the Bencic who was losing her cool on court. The Swiss star immediately turned her anger into aggression on her shots that moved her away from Kerber. It was too much for the German to take on, as her game wasn’t up to 100 percent. Bencic continued on winning her second in a row before winning Game Nine with a love service to end the 1 hour and 30 minute match. The downfall for Kerber was her unforced errors that gave Bencic the big leads in both sets. She tallied 48 while serving at 58 percent. It became the second time she found herself out of the Cincinnati masters.
With her winning streak still on the move, Bencic was again smiling from cheek to cheek enjoying her style of play and its overall dominance against players. “It’s amazing for me,” Bencic told WTA during her on court interview. “I’m so proud that I managed to win.”
The victory has her going against strong opponents in the second round. When the time comes she will go against Italian Flavia Pennetta who hasn’t gotten far in recent but will be a challenge for her nonetheless.