Dutch outsider Kiki Bertens survived a match point as she handed world number one Simona Halep her first defeat since Wimbledon to lift the the WTA Cincinnati title on Sunday.
Bertens, ranked 17th in the world, beat Romania’s Halep 2-6, 7-6 (8/6), 6-2 in the women’s final of the combined WTA and ATP hardcourt tournament.
She ended a nine-match winning streak for Halep, who beat US Open champion Sloane Stephens in the final at Montreal last week.
Bertens notched her 10th defeat this season of a Top 10 opponent as she beat Halep for the second time in five meetings in a comeback win which lasted for just over two hours.
Halep ran out of energy in a third-set collapse.
She’s had a hectic hardcourt schedule which still includes a provisional start next week in New Haven with the US Open starting in just eight days.
Kiki Bertens who will be 27 in December turned a pro in 2009.
Her highest WTA singles ranking was No. 15, which she reached in May 2018. Her career high in doubles is No. 16, achieved in April 2018.
To date, she has won five WTA singles and ten WTA doubles titles. Bertens is widely regarded as a clay-court specialist. She is coached by Raemon Sluiter.