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Aryna Sabalenka Wins Linz Open, Replaces Serena Williams In WTA Top-10 Rankings

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Top-seeded Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus clinched her third title of the year. She secured a 7-5, 6-2 victory over doubles partner and second-seeded Elise Mertens in the Linz final on Sunday in Austria. The 22-year-old has moved up to WTA’s top 10 rankings on Monday.  She has been ranked at number 9 in singles and number 2 in doubles by the Women Tennis Association (WTA). With her achievement, 23 Grand Slam winner Serena Williams has now dropped to 11th in the ranking as she has not played any match since the French Open due to her Achilles injury.

With this, Sabalenka won her eighth career title in Linz. “I learned that I need to move a lot in my warm-ups in order to feel the court really well. I need to get tired before I get on court. I find it’s helping me to work really hard from the beginning of my matches,” she told WTA Tennis after the winning match.

As Sabalenka returned to the WTA’s top 10, Ashleigh Barty remains at the top despite not being a part of the US and French Open in 2020. Her last match was at the Qatar Open in February. Sabalenka tied with Simona Halep for most tournament victories in the season that is affected by the coronavirus pandemic. Sabalenka has now won nine straight matches after taking the title in Ostrava last month.

“I would say that match changed everything. It gave me a lot of power because after I won it, I felt much more relaxed, and I believed I could come back from anything. It gave me more freedom, and every time I stepped on the court after, I felt like everything was under my control. Hopefully I can keep this feeling for my next tournaments,” she added saying.

Sabalenka won her first Grand Slam at the 2019 US Open. Overall, she has won a total of 12 WTA titles so far.

Also Read: Meet the Highest Paid Female Athletes. Naomi Osaka, Serena Williams rule list

Feature Image Credit: WTA

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