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Success for Marion Bartoli at the AEGON International
Marion Bartoli has won the AEGON International, beating Petra Kvitova 6-1, 4-6, 7-5 to take the women's singles title.
"It's great to come up with the win," said the victorious French player after the final. "It's an extremely tough tournament, with seven of the top ten players competing."
In blustery conditions on Centre Court Bartoli, the sixth seed and world No.9, raced through the first set 6-1, only for Kvitova, the Czech fifth seed and world No.8, to strike back in the second before Bartoli served it out at the second time of asking in the decider.
"It was very tough to play in those conditions," continued Bartoli, "but it's the same for both players. It's been a great season for me so far."
In round one Bartoli saved a matchpoint against Lucie Safarova before gaining victories over Martinez Sanchez and third seed Victoria Azarenka to reach the semi-finals.
Forced to play both the semi-final and final on one day Bartoli first overcame Sam Stosur 6-3, 6-1 before her three set victory over Kvitova.
"I had to fight for it, playing two matches back to back in the same day, I'm not used to that anymore, it reminds me of my junior time. She [Kvitova] was hitting the ball very hard and very deep, but at the end it was just fighting and trying to find a way to win."
Bartoli, who had lost in the semi-finals in Eastbourne for four years in a row before 2011, will now take two days off before she plays her first match at Wimbledon, against a qualifier, on Tuesday.
In the women's doubles the title went to the top seeds Kveta Peschke & Katarina Srebotnik after they beat second seeded Americans Liezel Huber & Lisa Raymond 6-3, 6-0 in the final on court one.
14. March 201
photo Cheltenham jockey club
14. March 229
photo Cheltenham Racecourse