LEXINGTON, Ky. — Jennifer Brady won her first WTA title at the Top Seed Open, overcoming a shaky serve and using a five-game run to seize control for a 6-3, 6-4 victory over Jil Teichmann in Sunday’s final.
It was the first professional tennis event in the United States since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, and no spectators were allowed.
Brady, a 25-year-old American who began the week ranked 49th, did not drop a set throughout the hard-court tournament and ceded only 24 games in all. It was a perfect way to prepare for the US Open, which begins Aug. 31 in New York.
Against Teichmann, a 23-year-old from Switzerland, Brady had trouble with her serve, one of her biggest assets, and put only 33% of first serves in play during the first set.
After one double-fault, Brady slapped her left thigh with her left palm three times. After another, she exclaimed: “I’ve never missed this many first serves! I don’t get it!”
But at 3-all in the first set, she saved four break points then earned the first break of the match in the next game to lead 5-3 when the 63rd-ranked Teichmann shanked a forehand.
That was part of a stretch where Brady punished any midcourt ball from Teichmann with powerful groundstrokes and went up by a set and 2-0 in the second.
Brady, who is based in Florida, reached her first tour-level final by eliminating 16-year-old American Coco Gauff in Saturday’s semifinals.
Teichmann already owns two WTA titles, both won last year on clay courts.