Dubai: Venus Williams won her third Dubai Duty Free Women’s Open title and her 45th singles career crown after vanquishing Frenchwoman Alize Cornet 6-3, 6-0 in an entertaining final on Saturday evening.
Playing in only her second final of the season, there was very little the 24-year-old from France could do to stop Venus from joining four-time winner Justine Henin as the only player to win in Dubai at least three times.
After reaching the semi-final on her debut in 2002, Venus won the title in 2009 and 2010, while Henin claimed the trophies in 2003, 2004, 2006 and 2007.
The win in Dubai will now move Venus from No 44 to 29 when the new WTA rankings are announced on Monday.
The American’s last singles title came in 2012 when she claimed the Luxembourg Open.
“It’s such a wonderful feeling to be back after four years here and winning the trophy. I was really expecting my sister Serena to be here in the final against me, but she messed it up yesterday,” Venus said.
The final was contested with a fast and furious pace, with Cornet trying to stir up the same form that saw her ease her way past world number one Serena in straight sets in the semi-finals on Friday. Both players broke each other’s serve in the third and fourth games, but Venus showed very little mercy as she broke again to take a 5-2 lead.
Venus finally served out the set 6-3 in 44 minutes.
The second set proved to be a breeze for the former world number one as she dominated with breaks in the first, third and fifth games to wrap up set and match 6-0 in 45 minutes.
The win in the final took Venus’s winning streak in Dubai to 15. “I think I need to play a little more here as I really do well,” she said.
“Maybe I will sit down and study to see what works for me in Dubai. I need to come and play here every year,” the 33-year-old added.
Abdul Rahman Falaknaz, vice-president, Tennis Emirates, was joined by Colm McLoughlin, executive vice-president, Dubai Duty Free; Salah Tahlak, tournament director; George Horan, president, Dubai Duty Free; and Sinead Al Sibai, vice-president, Marketing, Dubai Duty Free, in presenting the trophies after the final.
Earlier, Alla Kudryavtseva and Anastasia Rodionova continued their winning form for 2014 with their second title this year following a 6-2, 5-7, 10-8 win over the American pair of Raquel Kops-Jones and Abigail Spears.