Sorana Cirstea claimed her second career WTA singles title at long last, upsetting No.1 seed Elise Mertens to earn the TEB BNP Paribas Tennis Championship Istanbul crown. Cirstea did not drop a set all week.
After a long wait, Sorana Cirstea is once again a singles champion on the WTA, as the Romanian defeated No.1 seed Elise Mertens 6-1, 7-6(3) to win her second career title at the TEB BNP Paribas Tennis Championship Istanbul on Sunday.
"I’m very, very happy for this trophy," Cirstea said, in the trophy ceremony. "I did not expect it, to be honest, so probably I’m twice as glad!"
67th-ranked Cirstea charged to the trophy without losing a set all week, and improved to 3-0 against Mertens with the win under breezy, overcast conditions. Cirstea broke the Mertens serve five times and won a stellar 70 percent of her own second-service points to clinch the crown.
With the victory, Cirstea notched her third Top 20 win of this season, which has turned out to be a resurgent year for the former Top 25 player.
Earlier in 2021, she reached her first WTA quarterfinal in 17 months at the Grampians Trophy in Melbourne, then shocked World No.8 Petra Kvitova to reach the third round of the Australian Open.
"I’m very, very happy for this trophy," Cirstea said after her victory.
"I did not expect it, to be honest, so probably I’m twice as glad!" she added.
Runner-up Mertens was the no. 1 seed in the tournament.