Melanie Oudin rise and shine at AEGON Classic – Tennis Special
Former US Open quarter-finalist, Melanie Oudin, outshined everyone to capture her maiden WTA tour title at the AEGON Classic in Birmingham.
The American youngster was ranked at number 208 when she entered this WTA International level tournament. She shocked Bibiane Schoofs and Gail Brodsky in straight sets to enter the main draw.
In her opening match against 10th seeded Sorana Cirstea, the American made a sloppy start and lost the opening set. However, she re-structured and ultimately carved out the victory with a 3-6, 6-3, 6-2 score line in 88 minutes.
The 21-year-old kept her momentum rolling in the following round where the Portuguese qualifier, Michelle Larcher de Brito, awaited. She dropped her serve four times but smashed eight aces to record a straight set success in almost one a half hour.
Currently ranked 84th in the WTA Premier Rankings, Oudin went berserk against the Russian star, Elena Vesnina. She made quick in-roads and eventually clinched the match with a bagel.
Due to bad weather conditions in Birmingham, Oudin had to perform double duty to reach the final round. She rallied past her compatriot, Irina Falconi, in a three-set thriller before setting-up a semi-final date with eighth seeded Ekaterina Makarova.
The youngster lost her serve four times but availed five out of seven break opportunities to record a 6-4, 3-6, 6-2 victory against Makarova.
"I've played six or seven matches in a row here now and I feel my confidence building with each one. I've always loved playing on grass. I think my forehand is one of my biggest weapons and since I hit it so flat it goes through the court a lot on grass."
The American youngster played her best tennis three years ago when she reached her career best ranking of number 31 and secured a final eight berth at the Flushing Meadows.
Oudin stated further after her back-to-back victory to reach the final showdown, “I feel like I'm showing Top 50 tennis again. I hope to get back up there."
In the title-round, Oudin stepped into the British grass courts with confidence. She overpowered the former world number one at the Wimbledon Championships in 2009 and carried her winning ways in this event. The youngster lost her serve twice but cashed
five out of nine break chances to formulate a 6-4, 6-2 success.
The blooming American stated in a press conference after bagging the title:
"It was like this came out of nowhere. I'd been working away for a long time, and I was waiting for something to happen and it didn't. Until now, that is.''
The 21-year-old captured crown at the New Braunfels ITF last month. She is looking forward to carry her rhythm in the upcoming season.
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