Azarenka routs Sharapova to win at Indian Wells
18 Mar 2012:
Reuters


Victoria Azarenka of Belarus celebrates with her trophy
World number one Victoria Azarenka clinched her fourth title of the year with a 6-2 6-3 demolition of an error-prone Maria Sharapova in the final of the Indian Wells WTA tournament on Sunday.

On a cold and blustery day, the Australian Open champion broke Sharapova's notoriously fragile serve twice in the opening set and four times in the second to triumph in one hour and 26 minutes on the showpiece stadium court.

Although Azarenka faced a little more resistance from Sharapova late in the second set, she held off the Russian's fightback and ended the match with a probing backhand which forced a desperate lob from her opponent that floated long.

The 22-year-old Belarusian dropped her racket in delight and set off on a running jig in the direction of the players' box after improving her record this year to 23-0, the best start to a WTA Tour season since 1997.

Swiss Martina Hingis recorded 37 consecutive victories to launch her 1997 campaign with Azarenka next best on 23 and American Serena Williams in third, with 21 in 2003.

"I was really actually nervous before the final," a beaming Azarenka told reporters after lifting the imposing crystal trophy. "I knew Maria had played some excellent tennis this week and she's always a very tough opponent to play.

"What was important for me was to try to put as much pressure on her, not to really let her into the match. It was a little bit difficult with the wind to control but I handled the situation really good.

"I never dreamed about that," Azarenka said of her perfect start to the season. "It's amazing. I just really focused on every match at a time. I'm not thinking too much ahead."

FIRST SLAM

Azaranka, who won her first grand slam title at the Australian Open in January with a straight sets win over Sharapova, broke the Russian in the first and seventh games of the match to lead 5-2.

The Belarusian then held to clinch the opening set in 40 minutes after a Sharapova forehand service return flew long.

Sharapova's serving woes continued in the second as she was again broken in the first and third games to trail 0-3.

Unexpectedly, Azarenka lost serve for the first time in the fourth after Sharapova clawed her way back from 40-15 down but the Russian once again failed to hold serve in the fifth when she blasted a forehand long to trail 1-4.

Azarenka was also broken in the sixth when Sharapova followed a forehand crosscourt winner with a crunching backhand winner down the line, pumping her left fist in celebration.

Though the Russian finally held for the first time in the set in the seventh, Azarenka won the next two games to improve her career record to 5-3 over Sharapova.

"She's extremely solid and she makes you work for every point," said former world number one Sharapova who was champion here in 2006. "Ultimately she forces you to want to do a little bit more than either you should or would want to.

"She's playing with a lot of confidence. I just made too many unforced errors at the wrong time."


All copyrights are to their respective owners.
No license is given to reproduce any material from this page without prior consent.
Related links:  WTA - Indian Wells - USA 2012 - Maria Sharapova - Victoria Azarenka
Related Pages:  ????? - ????? ??????? - ???????? ??????? ?????????
News on:  WTA - Indian Wells - USA 2012 - Maria Sharapova - Victoria Azarenka
 
Latest Tennis News
 Yesterday: Former champ Murray off and running in Miami title quest:  Andy Murray made a flying start as he aims for a hat-trick of Miami Masters titles, with the third seed continuing his dominance Friday over American...
 26 Mar: Del Potro dumped in Miami as injury return fizzles out:  Argentine Juan Del Potro failed to fire in his return from wrist surgery, with the crowd-pleaser losing 6-4, 7-6 (9-7) to Canadian Vasek Pospisil to exit...
 25 Mar: Nadal still prepping for start in Miami despite ankle injury:  Rafael Nadal said on Tuesday he will fight to be ready for his start on Friday at the Miami Masters as he works overtime to heal...
 25 Mar: based Williams aiming to make Miami start despite bad knee:  Florida resident and defending champion Serena Williams is hoping to make her Friday start at the Miami Masters, despite a knee injury. "I think if I'm...
 25 Mar:  McIlroy split was like someone dying, says Wozniacki :  Former world number one Caroline Wozniacki says she felt like someone close to her had died after the split from golfer Rory McIlroy last year. ...
 24 Mar:  Hard for Halep to think of top spot while Serena rules :  World number three Simona Halep says it is hard to imagine reaching the top of the world rankings as long as Serena...
24 Mar:  Murray hopeful Bjorkman can compliment coach Mauresmo
23 Mar: Djokovic keeps big lead at top of ATP rankings
23 Mar: Williams keeps lead in women's tennis rankings
22 Mar:  Halep battles back to claim Indian Wells crown
21 Mar:  Djokovic crushes Murray to reach Indian Wells final
20 Mar: Federer routs Berdych to reach Indian Wells semi-finals
19 Mar:  Jankovic advances past injured Tsurenko
19 Mar:  Injured Tomic gifts Djokovic spot in semis
18 Mar:  Murray into Indian Wells quarters, Nishikori out
16 Mar:  Bouchard eases into fourth round at Indian Wells
16 Mar:  Murray fends off Kohlschreiber at Indian Wells
15 Mar:  Watson celebrates her first top-10 win
Rafael Nadal - SpainNovak Djokovic - Serbia
25 Mar: Nadal still prepping for start in Miami despite ankle injury
23 Mar: Djokovic keeps big lead at top of ATP rankings
9 Mar: Murray returns to fourth in world rankings, Djokovic stays top
28 Feb:  Nadal reaches first final of year in Argentine Open
25 Mar: Serbia's Tipsarevic returns to court alongside Djokovic
23 Mar: Djokovic keeps big lead at top of ATP rankings
21 Mar:  Djokovic crushes Murray to reach Indian Wells final
19 Mar:  Injured Tomic gifts Djokovic spot in semis
Roger Federer - SwitzerlandAndy Murray - United Kingdom
23 Mar: Djokovic keeps big lead at top of ATP rankings
20 Mar: Federer routs Berdych to reach Indian Wells semi-finals
9 Mar: Murray returns to fourth in world rankings, Djokovic stays top
28 Feb: Federer notches seventh title triumph in Dubai
Yesterday: Former champ Murray off and running in Miami title quest
24 Mar:  Murray hopeful Bjorkman can compliment coach Mauresmo
21 Mar:  Djokovic crushes Murray to reach Indian Wells final
18 Mar:  Murray into Indian Wells quarters, Nishikori out
Serena Williams - United StatesMaria Sharapova - Russia
24 Mar:  Hard for Halep to think of top spot while Serena rules
23 Mar: Williams keeps lead in women's tennis rankings
12 Mar:  Serena says 'right time' to make Indian Wells return
23 Feb: Halep back in top three in women's tennis rankings
23 Mar: Williams keeps lead in women's tennis rankings
23 Feb: Halep back in top three in women's tennis rankings
16 Feb: Williams retains advantage at number one women's tennis top 10
9 Feb: Williams stays top of unchanged women's tennis top 10
David Ferrer - SpainVictoria Azarenka - Belarus
13 Nov 2014: Ferrer replaces injured Raonic in London lineup
25 Oct 2014:  Murray ousts Ferrer in Valencia to boost London bid
19 Oct 2014:  Murray battles past Ferrer to clinch Vienna Open title
18 Oct 2014: Murray, Ferrer to duel for year-end place in Vienna
28 Feb:  Safarova beats Azarenka to win Doha title
24 Jan:  This is me, says grunting, cursing Azarenka
22 Jan:  Azarenka makes loud statement at Melbourne Park
12 Aug 2014: Azarenka pulls from Cincinnati with knee injury
Juan Martin Del Potro - ArgentinaCarolina Wozniacki - Denmark
26 Mar: Del Potro dumped in Miami as injury return fizzles out
2 Mar:  Del Potro sees comeback by late March
13 Jan: Del Potro makes winning return with Sydney success
11 Jan:  Del Potro happy to put down the remote and pick up his racket
25 Mar:  McIlroy split was like someone dying, says Wozniacki
23 Feb: Halep back in top three in women's tennis rankings
22 Jan:  Azarenka makes loud statement at Melbourne Park
9 Jan: Williams to face Wozniacki for Auckland title
Tomas Berdych - Czech RepublicAgnieszka Radwanska - Poland
20 Mar: Federer routs Berdych to reach Indian Wells semi-finals
15 Feb: Wawrinka completes trophy set indoors in Rotterdam
12 Feb: Murray, Berdych battle for Rotterdam quarter-final spots
26 Jan:  Comeback kid Nadal seeks to maintain Berdych domination
15 Mar:  Watson celebrates her first top-10 win
10 Jan: Poland stun US to win first Hopman Cup title
27 Aug 2014: China's Peng knocks out fourth seed Radwanska
10 Aug 2014:  Radwanska eases past Venus Williams to win Rogers Cup
Stan Wawrinka - SwitzerlandJo-Wilfried Tsonga - France
15 Feb: Wawrinka completes trophy set indoors in Rotterdam
13 Feb: Swiss to miss Federer, Wawrinka in Davis Cup first round
30 Jan:  Djokovic edges Wawrinka to book final with Murray
30 Jan:  Dead battery led to Wawrinka losing Australian Open title
21 Nov 2014: Wawrinka takes Switzerland to 1-0 lead over France
12 Aug 2014: Tsonga running on empty in opening Cincinnati loss
11 Aug 2014: Tsonga aims to ride his winning hardcourt wave in Cincinnati
10 Aug 2014:  Tsonga caps week of upsets with win over Federer and title
Petra Kvitova - Czech RepublicNa Li - China
23 Feb: Halep back in top three in women's tennis rankings
16 Feb: Williams retains advantage at number one women's tennis top 10
24 Jan:  American Keys upsets Kvitova to make fourth round
9 Nov 2014: Czech Republic wins Fed Cup thanks to epic Kvitova win over Kerber
29 Dec 2014:  Warrior spirit helps Nishikori put puzzle together
27 Jun 2014:  Li toppled and Djokovic tumbles on Wimbledon's grass
27 May 2014:  Australian Open champion Li beaten at French Open
9 May 2014:  Sharapova through in Madrid, injured Serena out
Ana Ivanovic - SerbiaSamantha Stosur - Australia
17 Feb: Ivanovic gives Lisicki Dubai drubbing; Pliskova, Radwanska through
12 Jan: Sharapova closes in on leader Williams
22 Oct 2014:  Ivanovic downs Bouchard for first Singapore win
17 Aug 2014: Williams claims 62nd career title with Cincinnati breakthrough win
26 Aug 2014:  Kvitova, Bouchard steamroll into second round at U.S. Open
1 Jun 2014:  Sharapova grinds down Stosur to reach French Open last eight
26 May 2014:  Stosur stitched up after gym work goes wrong
3 Nov 2013: Romanian Halep fights back to see off Stosur
Kei Nishikori - JapanVenus Williams - United States
18 Mar:  Murray into Indian Wells quarters, Nishikori out
14 Mar:  Fifth seed Nishikori reaches third round at Indian Wells
29 Jan:  Djokovic thrashes Raonic to set up Wawrinka semi-final
24 Jan:  High ranking sits uncomfortably on Nishikori's shoulders
27 Jan:  Williams sisters look to turn back clock in quarters
10 Jan: Poland stun US to win first Hopman Cup title
9 Jan: Williams to face Wozniacki for Auckland title
29 Aug 2014:  Errani triumphs over Venus after unforgettable moment