Agnes Szavay wins China Open
Hungarian teenager Agnes Szavay came back from the brink to win the China Open on Sunday with a tough three-set victory over Jelena Jankovic.sports Updated: Sep 23, 2007 22:10 IST
Hungarian teenager Agnes Szavay came back from the brink to win the China Open on Sunday with a tough three-set victory over Jelena Jankovic, denying the top seed a fifth title this season.
The 18-year-old Hungarian eventually won 6-7 (7/9) 7-5, 6-2 , and fell to her knees at the Beijing tennis centre.
"I'm so happy," she said as she kissed the crystal winner's goblet.
The surprise US Open quarter-finalist continued her 2007 run to glory after starting the year just inside the top 200 on the WTA.
The victory means Szavay will gate-crash the top 20 after eliminating the third top 10 opponent of her short career.
"I'm taking things step-by-step. Of course I want to be in the top 10, but the jump from top 20 is a huge job."
She added Serb number three Jankovic to her victim's list which included Daniela Hantuchova at New Haven in August and Nadia Petrova at the US Open.
Jankovic, the favourite from Belgrade looked like producing a fairytale finish after rallying from 0-5 down in the first-set tiebreaker to win it after saving three set points and taking an early lead after 67 minutes.
But the determined Svazay was just settling in for what would prove to be a long evening at the Beijing tennis centre lasting 2 hours and 55 minutes.
The Hungarian who announced her presence on the world stage by winning the French Open juniors two years ago, made her own miracle recovery from 1-5 down in the second set, denying Janovic on a match point to hold, 2-5.
Two more breaks of the shaky Serb and the outsider was back in the chase, levelling at a set apiece.
In the third, Szavay took the early lead 2-0 and overcame stiff Jankovic defence before finally coming through for victory after losing her first set of the week during the encounter.
Szavay improved to 54-13 on the season as she handed Jankovic her 19th loss of 2007 against 70 victories from a packed-out playing schedule.
Jankovic will stay third in the world, trailing Russian Svetlana Kuznetsova, who withdrew from Beijing with an abdominal injury and was unable to defend her title.
Szavay followed up her trophy on clay in Palermo with the Beijing crown, achieved during her debut event in China.
She is already looking to return for the Beijing Olympics.
"I'll definitely come back, that's the one of the reasons I came this year.
"I wanted to prepare for the Olympics, I really like to play here."