Azarenka defeats Sharapova for title

Updated: 2012-03-20 08:06

(China Daily)

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World No 1 Victoria Azarenka routed world No 2 Maria Sharapova 6-2, 6-3 to take the ATP/WTA Indian Wells women's title on Sunday and stretch her 2012 win streak to 23 matches.

Azarenka has won every match she has played this year, the best start to a season since Martina Hingis won 37 in a row in 1997.

"I was really nervous before the final," Azarenka said. "It is important for me to try and put as much pressure on her and not let her into the match.

"I really had to stay on my feet and keep playing my game.

"It was little a hard with the wind, but I am happy I went through with this determination."

Azarenka's victory comes six weeks after she beat Sharapova in straight sets in the Australian Open final to win her first Grand Slam title.

The 22-year-old from Belarus hit one ace, had two double faults and won 71 percent of her first serve points in collecting her fourth title of 2012 and a $1 million winner's check.

Earlier in the draw at Indian Wells, Azarenka passed Serena Williams's 2003 win streak of 21 matches and now has her sights set on catching Hingis.

- Agence France-Presse

(China Daily 03/20/2012 page23)