Ostapenko Defeats Krejcikova In Rollercoaster Birmingham Final To Win First Title In 2023

Ostapenko Defeats Krejcikova In Rollercoaster Birmingham Final To Win First Title In 2023

by Zachary Wimer

Jelena Ostapenko won her first title of the 2023 season after beating Barbora Krejcikova in the Birmingham Classic final.

When two highest-seeded players at a tournament reach the final, they prove that they were really the strongest two players in the field, and that's exactly what happened at the WTA 250 event in Birmingham when the first-seeded Czech met the second-seeded Latvian.

It was already the fifth match over the past two years for the two, with their H2H tied at 2-2 ahead of the Birmingham Classic final. Despite scheduling controversy, many fans found their way to the final match in Birmingham.

The first set of the final match was a typical grass-court final set, with both players really cautious, but also very strong on their serve. There were only three break points, and they were distributed over a couple of minutes as first Ostapenko had one chance in the sixth game, and Krejcikova had two chances in the seventh game.

After neither of the players could use their chances, the first set had to be decided in a tie-break and it was a real rollercoaster. First, Ostapenko had three set points, leading 6-4 and 7-6. But Krejcikova saved them all and had her chance at 8-7. But the Czech wasn't able to use that, allowing her opponent to win the tie-break 10-8.

Ostapenko didn't want to experience the same nerve-wracking fight also in the second set, and she did everything possible to avoid that. Breaking her opponent's serve twice, she was only two points away from winning the match at 5-1, 40-40.

But the Czech player fought back. She broke back and when her opponent was serving for the match for the second time, she was up 30-15. But that wasn't enough as Ostapenko managed to win the match 7-6(8), 6-4 to win the 2023 Birmingham Classic final.

Although the Latvian celebrates the title, Krejcikova can also celebrate as the final run was enough for her to secure her return to the Top 10 of the WTA Rankings shortly before Wimbledon.


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