DUBAI, Feb. 25 (Xinhua) -- Elena Vesnina and her Russian compatriot Ekatarina Makarova won the women's doubles final of the 17th edition of the WTA Dubai Duty (DDF) Tennis Championships 2017 here on Saturday, beating the Chinese-Croatian duo Peng Shuai/Andrea Hlavackova 6-2 4-6 10-7 and cashing in 139,300 dollars prize money.
"We found a real good rhythm and we felt we were controlling the game," said a relieved and happy winner Vesnina, currently positioned 16 in the WTA singles ranking, said after the final. Her teammate Makarova said, "this winning is a very prestigious trophy and we played the final and this brings us so much confidence for our next tournament when we play Indian Wells in March."
The match on the center court of the DDF tennis stadium started with a 1-all, but the Russian duo Makarova/Vesnina then gained the upper hand, advancing to a 3-1 lead and eventually took the first set with a 6-2 win. The match was interrupted 20 minutes by light rain in the first set.
During the second set, rainfall sent the four players back to the changing rooms three times, much to the frustration of the few thousand tennis aficionados in the DDF tennis stadium.
The Chinese-Czech team Peng/Hlavackova, dressed in blue-orange colors, improved their power play on the court through a clever switch between long line shots and lobs but continued to suffer from their own unforced errors and double faults.
"The interruptions due to rain in the second set led to an on-off-game and brought us a bit out of our rhythm," Vesnina recalled. 31-year-old Peng and her one year younger teammate Hlavackova "are a strong team, they were the runners-up of the Australian Open this year. After the interruptions they regained strength and we lost some unlucky points. It was really tough," said the Moscow-born Makarova.
A disappointed but also self-controlled Peng said about her opponents respectfully.
"I think they are a great team and they had been lucky during several points," she said, "I feel lucky after I had back surgery in late 2015. I want to keep going and play both singles and doubles, but I also want to enjoy my matches."
The world 57th-ranked said she would head from Dubai directly to Kuala Lumpur to play the 2017 BMW Malaysian Open which starts on Monday, Feb. 27.