$25,000 Rancho Santa Fe - Michelle Larcher de Brito - singles champion
Just a week after turning 18, Portuguese Fed Cup player Michelle Larcher de Brito was celebrating her career first singles title at a professional tournament. This special moment came on the ITF Pro Circuit at the $25,000 tournament held at Rancho Santa Fe in California, USA.
The former WTA Top 100 ranked player, up against 20-year old American 3rd seed Madison Brengle in the final held on Super Bowl Sunday, had to recover from a set down to claim the title with a 36 64 61 triumph in a match lasting just 1 minute short of the 2-hour mark.
The first set of this final was the only set of tennis dropped all week by the fourth seeded player en route to her first final, having, in the earlier rounds, recorded comfortable straight sets wins over her opponents, including a quarterfinal 62 63 victory over another seeded opponent in Ukrainian Tetiana Luzhanska, who was seeded eighth.
Following her win, Larcher de Brito said: “I am really pleased with how I played this week and I am happy to win my first title of the year. I fought hard and I have been working a lot on my game so it feels good to see some results like this.”
Currently ranked around the 200 mark, her team and fans will be hoping this title will be the first of many for the talented teen as she looks to climb the rankings and return to the WTA Top 100.