Kazakhstan’s Zarina Diyas added her name to the illustrious list of winners at The Northern Lawn Tennis Club claiming the Aegon Manchester Trophy title.
Victory over Serbia’s Alexandra Krunic 6-4 6-4 sees Diyas join tennis greats Billie-Jean King and Pete Sampras, who have both won titles on the grass courts of Didsbury.
Blazing sunshine and a capacity crowd set the perfect backdrop for an exciting final which saw Kazakhstan’s only professional tennis player account for the number seven seed in straight sets.
The unseeded 23-year-old, previously ranked as high as 31 is on the comeback trail, after a career threatening wrist injury put her out of the game for seven months.
Diyas, who reached the last 16 of Wimbledon in 2014 and 2015, was content with her performance and is looking forward to the rest of the grass court season:
“It was a tough week but I was playing really good, I am happy with my game I like to play on grass and I like to play here in Manchester, the crowd was amazing so I am really happy.
“I am going to Wimbledon [this year], I really love to play there, I am really looking forward to it.”
Krunic, 24, who won a title on clay last week in Croatia, was gracious in defeat admitting that she did not expect to reach the final in her first grass court tournament of the year.
She said: “It is always tough and disappointing to lose in the final, but, if my coach were to tell me that I am going to be in the final this week, I was going to grab it.
“I am very happy with my performance. Coming here from clay has been a very challenging task for me, but I think I managed to do that pretty well, so I am looking forward to the next couple of weeks playing on grass.”
Magdalena Frech and An-Sophie Mestach take doubles title
The Centre Court crowd was also treated to a competitive doubles final featuring Kai-Chen Chang and Marina Erakovic versus Magdalena Frech and An-Sophie Mestach in which Frech and Mestach emerged victorious, taking the match 6-4 7-6(7-5).
The winners had never previously played together, with Frech saying after the match: “It is amazing. I never expected that we would be in the final let alone win [the tournament]. That is the big thing for me and I am so happy right now.
Mestach added: “It was a good week, we enjoyed it. It was lovely weather today as well which is very nice. It was a good tournament so we are very happy.”