Comeback girl Paszek repeats trick on Kerber
World No. 8 Angelique Kerber became the latest victim of Tamira Paszek's extraordinary powers of resistance, snatching defeat from the jaws of victory in Saturday's AEGON International final.
Kerber faced an opponent in Paszek who had produced a quite remarkable comeback at the last-four stage just to reach the weekend showpiece. And the Austrian repeated the trick in the final, breaking as Kerber served for the match to snatch a 5-7 6-3 7-5 victory.
Paszek had found herself a set and 4-0 down to Marion Bartoli in their last-four encounter. She also trailed 2-0 in the third set, but managed to fight back to book her spot in the final.
Boasting a poor 2-13 season record heading into the tournament, Paszek nevertheless has greater grass-court pedigree than Kerber, reaching the quarter-finals last year at Wimbledon.
By contrast, Kerber has never been past the third round at SW19, but she was the more consistent stroke-maker for much of Saturday's clash, relying on her groundstrokes as she operated with a significantly less impressive first serve than her rival.
The third set brought the most significant gear change in the match, with Kerber creating 10 break points, one of which she accepted. She then had match point on Paszek's serve only to be denied by the Austrian.
Still Kerber remained in control as she served for the match, and she saw five match points come and go in total, but Paszek broke to restore parity before repeating the trick to claim the match.
At the UNICEF Open, victory went to Nadia Petrova, who defeated Urszula Radwanska 6-4 6-3. Radwanska, who had got to the final courtesy of Kim Clijsters' withdrawal in the semis, simply did not have the power to match her more illustrious rival.