Champions Crowned

With her Western & Southern Open title on Sunday, Illinois native Madison Keys earned her first Premier 5 title and booked a return trip to the top 10 in the world. 


Her 7-5, 7-6(5) win over Svetlana Kuznetsova, 34, extended her perfect record over the two-time major champion to 4-0. Kuznetsova served for both sets before the 24-year-old American rebounded to seal the biggest title of her career. 


“I'm obviously really happy and really proud of myself,” Keys said. “It's definitely more of a building block.  I want to do well in New York, and I want to have a good end of the season, so I’m taking a lot of positives from this week.”


Keys was just two points from being eliminated in the first round against another two-time Slam winner: Garbine Muguruza. She went on to defeat Daria Kasatkina, No. 4 seed Simona Halep, Venus Williams and Sofia Kenin before facing Kuznetsova in the final. Her performance in Cincinnati marked her first hard court final since the 2017 US Open. 


“It was a tough draw from the very start,” Keys said.  “I played some really, really great players from round one until today. I definitely think I played some of my best tennis consistently this week.”



On the men’s side, Daniil Medvedev said he hoped he’d be “third time lucky” after reaching his third final in as many weeks. He got his wish with a 7-6(3), 6-4 win over Belgian David Goffin.  


The 23-year-old is the first Russian to take home the Western & Southern Open title, bringing his total match wins this season to 44 – more than any other player on the ATP Tour in 2019. As a reward for his performance this week in Cincinnati, which included a three-set win over world No. 1 Novak Djokovic, he’ll also break into the top five for the first time on Monday – a feat no other Russian has accomplished since Nikolay Davydenko in June 2010. 


“It's been the best weeks in my life,” Medvedev said with a smile.  “I mean, as I say, my mentality was the best in my life.  My serve was the best in my life.  My tennis was really consistent.  I didn't have one bad match.  I'm just extremely happy.  And hopefully I can continue this way well through all my career but hopefully at least next few weeks.” 


Medvedev, who was competing in his tour-best sixth final of the year, is also the youngest Cincy Tennis champion since 21-year-old Andy Murray in 2008. He utilized experience beyond his years when he started cramping as he was attempting to serve out the match at 5-4 in the second set. The cramps prevented a dramatic celebration on court, but he’ll have plenty of time to make up for it tonight. 


“In Russia we say ‘who doesn't risk, doesn't drink Champagne,’” he said.  “So I'm drinking champagne tonight.”


In doubles action, Ivan Dodig and Filip Polasek took out Wimbledon champs and top seeds Juan Sebastian Cabal and Robert Farah.