Serena Williams, left, poses with the Miami Open trophy alongside Martina Navratilova on April 2. Alan Diaz / AP Phoro
Serena Williams, left, poses with the Miami Open trophy alongside Martina Navratilova on April 2. Alan Diaz / AP Phoro

Serena Williams ‘feels really good’ after clinching Miami title to join elite ‘eight’ club



World number one Serena Williams joined an elite club on Saturday, winning her eighth Miami WTA title with a comprehensive 6-2, 6-0 win over Spain’s Carla Suarez Navarro.

The 33-year-old, who won her 19th Grand Slam title in Australia this year, lifted the trophy in the elite premier level tournament for the third straight year.

She also won three straight Miami titles from 2002-04 and back-to-back titles in 2007-08.

Williams had already surpassed Steffi Graf for most Miami triumphs with her win last year.

On Saturday she joined Graf, Martina Navratilova and Chris Evert as the only Open Era players to win the same event at least eight times.

Graf won nine titles in Berlin, Evert won eight in Hilton Head, and Navratilova achieved the feat in seven tournaments — including her nine Wimbledon titles.

“It feels really good to have eight under my belt,” Williams said.

“Can’t say I thought I would win eight, especially in the beginning of the week.”

“I had a couple matches where I had nearly 60 unforced errors in both, so I just needed to kind of get my mind back there and say, ‘Serena, you normally don’t play like this, so just go to how you normally play,” she said of how she tried to regroup after clawing past world number three Simona Halep in the semi-finals.

In Suarez Navarro, Williams faced an opponent she had beaten in four prior encounters without dropping a set.

‘She’s the best’

World number 12 Suarez Navarro, playing in the biggest final of her career, wasn’t surprised to find the winners zinging past her from every part of the court.

“When I play with Serena I know that she’s the best,” Suarez Navarro said. “She has the game to make me play bad.

“But this time I believed in me, in how I’m playing the other matches. I tried. I tried until the last point, but it was tough and difficult for me.”

Suarez Navarro held her nerve and her serve through the first five games.

But Williams converted her third break chance of the sixth game to grab a 4-2 lead in the opening set, consolidating the break with an easy hold.

Suarez Navarro saved two set points against her serve in the next game, but Williams gave herself another chance with a forehand winner and Suarez Navarro handed her the set with an error.

Suarez Navarro had a chance to break in the first game of the second set, but Williams held on then broke at love in the next game.

She polished off the triumph in just 56 minutes.

It was a satisfying win for Williams, coming after a troublesome knee prompted her to forfeit her scheduled semi-final at the premier level tournament in Indian Wells a fortnight earlier.

Williams hasn’t lost a competitive match since October, when she fell to Halep in the round robin phase of the WTA Finals — which Williams went on to win.

Suarez Navarro lost her seventh WTA final in eight appearances. But her fine week in Florida, where her victims included Venus Williams, will see her break into the top 10 in the world rankings on Monday.

FOLLOW US ON TWITTER @NatSportUAE

Our family matters legal consultant

Name: Hassan Mohsen Elhais

Position: legal consultant with Al Rowaad Advocates and Legal Consultants.

Sarfira

Director: Sudha Kongara Prasad

Starring: Akshay Kumar, Radhika Madan, Paresh Rawal

Rating: 2/5

Results

5pm: Handicap (PA) Dh80,000 (Turf) 1,600m; Winner: Nadhra, Fabrice Veron (jockey), Eric Lemartinel (trainer)

5.30pm: Maiden (PA) Dh80,000 (T) 1,400m; Winner: AF Dars, Tadhg O’Shea, Ernst Oertel

6pm: Handicap (PA) Dh80,000 (T) 1,400m; Winner: AF Musannef, Tadhg O’Shea, Ernst Oertel

6.30pm: Handicap (PA) Dh80,000 (T) 1,200m; Winner: AF Taghzel, Malin Holmberg, Ernst Oertel

7pm: Wathba Stallions Cup Handicap (PA) Dh70,000 (T) 2,200m; Winner: M’Y Yaromoon, Khalifa Al Neyadi, Jesus Rosales

7.30pm: Handicap (TB) Dh100,000 (PA) 1,400m; Winner: Hakeem, Jim Crowley, Ali Rashid Al Raihe

Should late investors consider cryptocurrencies?

Wealth managers recommend late investors to have a balanced portfolio that typically includes traditional assets such as cash, government and corporate bonds, equities, commodities and commercial property.

They do not usually recommend investing in Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies due to the risk and volatility associated with them.

“It has produced eye-watering returns for some, whereas others have lost substantially as this has all depended purely on timing and when the buy-in was. If someone still has about 20 to 25 years until retirement, there isn’t any need to take such risks,” Rupert Connor of Abacus Financial Consultant says.

He adds that if a person is interested in owning a business or growing a property portfolio to increase their retirement income, this can be encouraged provided they keep in mind the overall risk profile of these assets.

Getting there and where to stay

Etihad Airways operates seasonal flights from Abu Dhabi to Nice Côte d'Azur Airport. Services depart the UAE on Wednesdays and Sundays with outbound flights stopping briefly in Rome, return flights are non-stop. Fares start from Dh3,315, flights operate until September 18, 2022. 

The Radisson Blu Hotel Nice offers a western location right on Promenade des Anglais with rooms overlooking the Bay of Angels. Stays are priced from €101 ($114), including taxes.

TOUR RESULTS AND FIXTURES

June 3: NZ Provincial Barbarians 7 Lions 13
June 7: Blues 22 Lions 16
June 10: Crusaders 3 Lions 12
June 13: Highlanders 23 Lions 22
June 17: Maori All Blacks 10 Lions 32
June 20: Chiefs 6 Lions 34
June 24: New Zealand 30 Lions 15 (First Test)
June 27: Hurricanes 31 Lions 31
July 1: New Zealand 21 Lions 24 (Second Test)
July 8: New Zealand v Lions (Third Test) - kick-off 11.30am (UAE)

Hales' batting career

Tests 11; Runs 573; 100s 0; 50s 5; Avg 27.38; Best 94

ODIs 58; Runs 1,957; 100s 5; 50s 11; Avg 36.24; Best 171

T20s 52; Runs 1,456; 100s 1; 50s 7; Avg 31.65; Best 116 not out

Starring: Jamie Foxx, Angela Bassett, Tina Fey

Directed by: Pete Doctor

Rating: 4 stars


Abtal

Keep up with all the Middle East and North Africa athletes at the 2024 Paris Olympics

      By signing up, I agree to The National's privacy policy
      Abtal