Maia Lumsden ends season with maiden $25k title

Maia Lumsden has ended the season by clinching the biggest title of her career at the $25k Budgen Motors GB Pro-Series event in Shrewsbury.

The 20 year old qualifier clinched the title by defeating Russian former top 100 player Valeria Savinykh 6-1 4-6 6-3. Winning Saturday’s final rounds up an excellent year for the Scot, who reached her first ever $25k final in Glasgow at the beginning of the year.

Having already dispatched third seed Barbara Haas in straight sets earlier in the week, Lumsden was in a confident mood and quickly took control of the final. Backed behind a sizeable crowd at The Shrewsbury Club, Lumsden broke her opponent twice to take a commanding 4-0 lead in just 12 minutes.

Savinykh, who defeated Katy Dunne in the opening round, was in good form coming into the final after winning the doubles event in Wirral last week with Freya Christie. But she was no match for an inspired Lumsden, who raced away in the opening set to take it 6-1.

After survivng a tricky opening service game, Lumsden looked en route to a comfortable win, claiming her fourth break of serve of the match to lead 2-0. However Savinykh battled back with two breaks of her own to lead 3-2, eventually taking the second set 6-4.

And after a topsy-turvy final set which saw breaks of serve for both players, Lumsden took control to break Savinykh and serve for the match. The Scot had no issues closing out the match, winning a $25k tournament for the first time.

Victory will give Lumsden a career high ranking going into 2019 and she will be looking to emulate the likes of Katie Swan and Katie Boulter next year. She can, and should, draw inspiration from Harriet Dart’s year who has surprised many by ending the year just outside the top 150 after an impressive year. Dart claimed her first $25k title this year and went on to shine, making her Wimbledon debut and winning her first WTA main draw match at Eastbourne.

Lumsden, who had to come through two rounds of qualifying in Shrewsbury, impressed throughout the week and will look to enter higher-level tournaments on the ITF tour next year.

Nicholls and Grey take doubles title

Olivia Nicholls and Sarah Beth Grey clinched the doubles title in Shrewsbury, one week after falling in the $25k final in the Wirral.

The British pair recovered from a nightmare start to defeat German sisters Tayisiya and Yana Morderger 0-6 6-3 10-4 to clinch their third $25k title of the year as a partnership. Both Nicholls and Grey have had excellent years and will be delighted to have clinched another title as they look forward to 2019.

Earlier this year, Olivia Nicholls confirmed that she was focusing on doubles events and will be encouraged by her season, which saw a 17-match winning run across March and April.

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