Posted by Barrie on Saturday, 22 May 2010

Maria Sharapova Wins Strasbourg Open

Maria Sharapova picked up her second WTA tour title of the season with a 7-5 6-1 victory over Kristina Barrois in the Internationaux de Strasbourg final today.

The Russian made a slow start, but turned the match on its head towards the end of the first set, winning 5 of the remaining 6 games as her inexperienced opponent failed to close out the first set. The second was comfortable for the former world number 1 as she raced away in what turned out to be a dominant display.

Kristina Barrois, playing in her first title played well at the start of the match, but failed to see out the first set, missing two easy points when serving for the set. After she dropped her service game at 5-4 it seemed inevitable that the Russian was going to be lifting the trophy at the end of the day. That's precisely what she did before playing down her chances at Roland Garros this week.

Maria Sharapova's toughest match this week and best performance came in the semi final, where she came from a set down to defeat Anabel Medina Garrigues. She came into the final as clear favourite.

The former Wimbledon, US and Australian Open Grand Slam champion hasn't played in many tournaments this season and is unlikely to be challenging for the French Open over the next fortnight. She enters as a 66/1 outsider to claim the only Grand Slam missing from her collection. Sharapova faces Ksenia Pervak in round 1.

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