Italy’s Flavia Pennetta wins US Open, 1st Grand Slam title

first_imgTo win the U.S. Open for her first Grand Slam title at age 33, Flavia Pennetta did not have to beat Serena Williams.Instead, Pennetta needed to get past the woman who ended Williams’ Grand Slam bid, Roberta Vinci. And Pennetta was able to do just that, pulling away in a matchup between a pair of Italians who were opponents and doubles partners as kids.In one of the unlikeliest major finals in women’s tennis, the 26th-seeded Pennetta beat Vinci 7-6 (4), 6-2 on Saturday at Flushing Meadows.Also read: Twitter wishes pour in for Leander Paes after US Open win Pennetta is the oldest woman in the Open era, which began in 1968, to become a Grand Slam champion for the first time. Vinci, who is 32, would have earned that distinction had she been able to follow her stunning upset of Williams in Friday’s semifinals with another victory.This was the first major final for either participant, and the first time since WTA computer rankings were instituted in 1975 that both U.S. Open women’s finalists were ranked outside the top 20 (Vinci is 43rd).And when Saturday’s match ended, after Pennetta flung her racket overhead, she went up to the net to find Vinci, not for a handshake but for a lengthy hug. Vinci patted her pal on the back repeatedly, while Pennetta cried. Then they sat on adjacent sideline chairs and chatted, just a couple of foes and friends, sharing a special moment.Vinci pantomimed throwing a punch as a joke, and Pennetta wrapped an arm around her.advertisementlast_img

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