SEOUL, South Korea -- Eleni Daniilidou of Greece held on for
a 6-3, 2-6, 7-6 (3) win over fourth-seeded Ai Sugiyama of Japan in
the Korea Open final Sunday to earn her fourth WTA singles title.
Down 4-5 in the deciding set, Daniilidou took three match points
from Sugiyama to ultimately force the tiebreaker. Daniilidou had a
leg cramp and collapsed to the court during the tiebreaker. After a
medical time-out, she took all but one point for the win.
"I tried to play the tiebreaker as aggressively as I could. The
key was to go for it," Daniilidou said. "It was my mistake not
calling the physio [earlier]. Ai is a fighter, I had to play very
The Korea Open title is Daniilidou's first hard-court win over
Sugiyama in four attempts. Sugiyama leads their head-to-head
meetings 4-3 and last defeated Daniilidou at the French Open in
"The first set, I tried to do what I had to do, but she was
hitting the ball deep and pushing me off the court. The second set,
I think she got a bit tired," said Sugiyama. "I knew she was
hurt. It was not easy to play normal. She was still hitting the
ball really good."