Hsieh downed by Bencic in Thailand

BREAK POINT::After playing the entire tournament without dropping a set, Taiwanese No. 1 Hsieh Su-wei failed to add a third WTA singles title to the two she earned in 2012

By Dave Carroll  /  Staff reporter

Mon, Nov 13, 2017 - Page 10

Former top-10 player Belinda Bencic of Switzerland yesterday won the first WTA Tour title of her comeback after five months on the sidelines at the Hua Hin 125k Championship, defeating Taiwanese No. 1 Hsieh Su-wei in the final in Thailand.

World No. 165 Bencic, who is coached by Martina Hingis’ mother, defeated the fourth seed 6-3, 6-4 in 1 hour, 38 minutes.

The Swiss player, who reached a career-high seventh in the world rankings last year, saved five of seven break points and converted five of 11, winning 79 of the 143 points contested to claim her first title of the year on the senior tour.

The Swiss star dropped just one set on her way to capturing the trophy, the first of her quarter-final against Vitalia Diatchenko of Russia, before fighting back to win in three.

It was Bencic’s third WTA Tour singles title after victories in Eastbourne, England, and Toronto in 2015.

Taiwanese world No. 96 Hsieh — born in Kaohsiung, but now based in Paris — also lost her previous meeting with Bencic 6-4, 4-6, 6-2 in the quarter-finals in Tianjin, China, in 2014.

Hsieh advanced to the Hua Hin final without dropping a set.

She defeated Wang Yafan of China 7-5, 6-3 in the first round, then cruised past Marie Bouzkova of the Czech Republic 6-4, 6-1.

She survived a late fightback to down Austrian Barbara Haas 6-1, 7-5, before edging another Swiss player, Viktorija Golubic, 6-3, 7-6 (7/4) in the semi-finals on Saturday.

The Taiwanese No. 1’s only WTA Tour singles titles were back in 2012 when she triumphed in Kuala Lumpur and Guangzhou, China.

She became the first ever Taiwanese to claim a Grand Slam title in 2013 when she won the doubles title at Wimbledon with Peng Shuai of China.