Serena Williams on ending her title drought: ‘It feels good, it has been a long time’
The long wait is over for Serena Williams as she won her first title in three years after beating Jessica Pegula in the ASB Classic final in Auckland.
Before Sunday’s trophy, the 38-year-old’s previous WTA Tour title came at the 2017 Australian Open after which she went on maternity leave.
The 23-time Grand Slam winner played in four major finals and the Rogers Cup in 2019 after her return, but came up short.
However, there were no such problems in Auckland as she beat Pegula 6-3, 6-4 in one hour and 35 minutes to win her first title as a mother and 73rd overall.
A first title in three years for @serenawilliams !
— WTA (@WTA) January 12, 2020
Pegula broke in the first game of the match and then had several break points to go 3-0 up.
Williams, though, broke back in game six and again in game eight as she won the final five matches of the set while a single break in game three of the second set earned her the win.
“It feels good, it has been a long time,” the former world No 1 said. “I played an incredible opponent in Jessica and honestly it was a great match.
“I was definitely improving as the week went on and I needed to because I had some tough matches. I played every day and I’m playing still, I’ve got another match.
“I feel fortunate and blessed to be out here and to be healthy and to play. I have been playing for so long and been through so much and I’m happy to be doing something I love.”
Paula Badosa’s classy tribute to Victoria Azarenka: ‘I wouldn’t be here without women like you’
“Thank you for inspiring me so much.”
Former British No 1s lead Cameron Norrie plaudits, saying ‘it doesn’t get much better than this’ for GB tennis
From wondering to what would happen when Andy Murray retired to having a first-ever men’s champion in Indian Wells.
The rise of Cameron Norrie: From feeling tennis was ‘too much’ to being Britain’s new leading man
Cameron Norrie has had a rise to prominence in 2021.
Filip Krajinovic reveals Novak Djokovic will play in Davis Cup Finals as they have ‘an agreement to play’
Novak Djokovic to feature at 2021 Davis Cup Finals?
‘I don’t know what people have against Brits with stealing shoes,’ jokes Cameron Norrie after shoes go missing
Brits and their shoes in Indian Wells.
‘If you fight, if you work, you can achieve anything,’ says Paula Badosa after winning BNP Paribas title
Paula Badosa is the 2021 BNP Paribas Open champion after beating Victoria Azarenka.
Indian Wells delight for Cameron Norrie as he caps brilliant year with BNP Paribas Open title
New British No 1 beat Nikoloz Basilashvili in three sets for his second title of 2021.
Cameron Norrie gives his verdict as he storms into the Indian Wells final
The new British number one triumphed 6-2 6-4 and will take on either Taylor Fritz or Nikoloz Basilashvili on Sunday.
Get to know Britain’s new number one Cameron Norrie as he closes in on a rankings breakthrough
Norrie is guaranteed to overtake Dan Evans in the ATP rankings after reaching the semi-finals in Indian Wells.
Victoria Azarenka’s return to form sweeps her into the Indian Wells final
Paula Badosa will play Victoria Azarenka in…