Japan’s Kimiko Date Krumm has failed in her bid to become the
oldest-ever winner of a WTA Tour event, losing in the final
of the Japan Open to Thailand’s Tamarine Tanasugarn.
Date Krumm, who at 40 would have beaten the record set by Billie
Jean King who won a tournament in Birmingham, England, aged 39
years, seven months and 23 days, was defeated 7-5 6-7 6-1 in a
marathon match lasting over three hours.
The Osaka victory gave 33-year-old Tanasugarn her fourth career
title, following her victories in 2008 and 2009 at ‘s-Hertogenbosch
in the Netherlands and in 2003 in Hyderabad, India.
Date Krumm, who had beaten top seed Samantha Stosur and third
seed Shahar Peer en route to the final, told the official WTA Tour
website: “I just tried my best and fought as hard as I could.
“Nobody wants to lose, so I tried everything. Now I will play
some ITF events followed by the Asian Games — so I will be
continuing to play tennis for the rest of the year.”
Meanwhile, former French Open champion Ana Ivanovic claimed her
first title in two years after defeating Patty Schnyder to win the
Austrian Open in Linz.
The seventh-seeded Serb, who had failed to win a tournament
since she triumphed at the same event in 2008, proved a class above
the Swiss to claim a 6-1 6-2 win in just 47 minutes.
Schnyder has also now gone two years without a tournament
victory — and this defeat means she has now lost three finals in
Linz following reverses in 2005 and 2007.