Seles continues hot streak in Shanghai

Monica Seles has made it three titles in a month by taking the Shanghai Open with a comfortable victory over unseeded Australian Nicole Pratt.
The top seed, Seles made short work of Pratt, 65th in the world and appearing in her first WTA tournament final.

The American hit 30 winners compared to just seven from her opponent on the way to a 6-2 6-3 victory – her 13th win in a row.

“It was a hard-fought match – we had some tough points out there, especially in the second set,” said Seles.

“It was really close and I had to stay strong.”

Seles – who won $22,000 to Pratt’s $12,000 – broke her opponent’s serve twice in each set and at the same time lost only seven points on her own serve.

“Last time I played her, she actually served very well so I expected her to serve well again,” Pratt said.

“It’s an indication of just how well she’s playing now.”

After losing the opening set, Pratt took a 2-1 lead in the second thanks to some powerful groundstrokes off her forehand of which Seles would have been proud.

But the Australian was soon broken again and Seles served out, losing only one point in her final two service games.

Seles has not lost a match since the fourth round of the US Open, capturing in the process the Brazil Open, the Japan Open and now the Shanghai Open.

She remains number eight in the world which is a far cry from the early 1990s before her infamous stabbing incident, when she was the top-ranked player for a staggering 178 weeks.