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Madison Keys claims biggest WTA title since 2019 with second Eastbourne crown

Arthur Kapetanakis | July 01, 2023


Madison Keys won her seventh WTA title on Saturday in Eastbourne, powering to the grass-court crown without dropping a set in five victories. The unseeded American beat compatriot Coco Gauff in the semifinals and then downed Daria Kasatkina, 6-2, 7-6(13), in Saturday's final at the WTA 500 in the United Kingdom.

 

Keys, who won her first WTA title in Eastbourne in 2014, has now claimed three of her seven tour-level trophies on grass. Her latest title, which will lift her back into the Top 20, is her biggest since she won the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati during the 2019 US Open Series.

"I love coming and playing in Eastbourne. Being able to win the title here twice now makes me have very fond memories," said Keys, who made sure to thank her fiancé, American ATP player Bjorn Fratangelo, for his support.

 

"If you told both of us two weeks ago that this is where I would be, we would not believe it. It's been a pretty tough year for me," she continued. "Being able to hold this trophy is absolutely amazing."

 

Keys was in command of the final, building a 6-2, 4-1 lead without facing a break point. But she had to dig deep to hold off a Kasatkina fightback, ultimately saving four set points in a marathon tiebreak to clinch a 70-minute second set. She closed out the victory on her fourth match point, winning a 30-shot rally with a booming forehand winner, her 34th winner of the contest.

 

The 15-13 tiebreak was the second-longest on the WTA Tour this season, second only to the Elena Rybakina's 16-14 win against Petra Kvitova in the Miami final.

Photo by Tom Dulat/Getty Images for LTA.

The 28-year-old Keys will now turn her attention to Wimbledon, where her best result is a quarterfinal run in 2015. Seeded 25th this fortnight, she will open her campaign against British wild card Sonay Kartal on Tuesday.

 

Read usta.com's Wimbledon preview

Photo by Justin Setterfield/Getty Images.

After Keys beat Gauff, 6-3, 6-3, in the Eastbourne semis on Friday, two more Americans squared off on Saturday in the event's doubles final.

 

Desirae Krawcyzk and Dutch partner Demi Schuurs scored a 6-2, 6-4 victory against Nicole Melichar-Martinez and Australia's Ellen Perez, the tournament's No. 2 seeds. It was the second team title of 2023 for Krawczyk and Schuurs, who previously won the Stuttgart crown in April. Krawczyk also claimed the Charleston trophy in April with countrywoman Danielle Collins. 

 

The Eastbourne title earned Krawcyzk a milestone 10th WTA doubles title. She will bid for No. 11 alongside Schuurs at Wimbledon, with the pair seeded fifth at the major. 

 

Melichar-Martinez and Perez will also team up again at Wimbledon as the fourth seeds.

Keys, Krawczyk and Melichar-Martinez were not the only Americans to make deep runs in Eastbourne. On the men's side, Tommy Paul reached the singles final, while Austin Krajicek and Croatian partner Ivan Dodig were doubles finalists.

 

In Mallorca, Christopher Eubanks claimed his first ATP singles title, earning himself a Top 50 debut ahead of his Wimbledon main-draw debut.

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