Palermo Open: Danielle Collins makes it to the podium with maiden trophy

Danielle Collins won the Palermo Open on Sunday with a 6-4, 6-2 win over Elena-Gabriela Ruse. This is the American’s first career title.

Ruse went up an early break in the first set but Collins, the top seed in the Italian city, but wasn’t able to maintain her lead at the set reached its business end. Two breaks in the final portion of the set helped Collins gain the lead over the Romanian qualifier. In the second set, Collins broke Ruse twice, once in the fourth game and then in the eighth game to clinch the title.

Collins had ended a chain of semi-final losses in reaching the final in Palermo. Her previous record in the semi-finals was 0-6. Likewise, against Ruse, Collins avenged a recent defeat. The two had previously played each other in the quarter-final of the Hungarian Grand Prix two weeks ago and back then, Ruse had gotten the better of the American, who’d been seeded fourth in the draw.

Palermo Open: Danielle Collins’ wait comes to an end

Speaking with the media, post her win, Collins said, “It’s given me so much self-confidence to finally win a tournament, because I’ve been on tour now for a couple of years, and that was one of my goals.”

Then, sharing her thoughts on the match, she added, “When I went on the court, I knew I was up against a tough opponent who’s been playing really well, who’s really been on a roll the last couple of weeks. I knew what I needed to do, but at times there were some moments where she was playing some really great tennis and it gave me some challenges. I had to fight for every single point, and I had to be really mentally engaged the entire way through. I needed to be on top of my tactics, to make technical adjustments along the way, so I was having to work through a bunch of different things throughout the match, with the challenges she was throwing my way.”

Danielle Collins’ victory at the Palermo Open made her the 14th first-time champion on the tour this season. Earlier, on the same day, Maryna Zanevska became the 13th first-time title winner, at the Poland Open.

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