Liudmila Samsonova won the Pan Pacific Open in Tokyo by defeating China’s Qinwen Zheng 7-5, 7-5, extending her quick rise on the Tour.
The world No. 30 defeated emerging star Zheng, the first Chinese kid to advance to the final of a Tour-level singles event, by just one point while only dropping serve once and hitting four aces. Samsonova, the first Russian player to win the competition since Nadia Petrova won 68% of her total service points.
Samsonova, who has already prevailed in 18 of her last 19 games, is emerging as a powerful force in women’s sports. Before making her maiden career appearance in the last 16 of the US Open at the age of 23, she had won titles in Washington and Cleveland last month. She didn’t lose a set in Tokyo this week and is now 4-0 in tournament finals.