By LEONID CHIZHOV, Associated Press Writer
October 14, 2007
MOSCOW (AP) -- Serena Williams was undone by a slew of errors Sunday and lost the Kremlin Cup final 5-7, 6-1, 6-1 to Elena Dementieva, who won her hometown tournament on the third attempt.
Top-seeded Nikolay Davydenko gave Russia a sweep of the men's and women's titles by beating Paul-Henri Mathieu of France 7-5, 7-6 (9) and winning this event for the second straight year. This was the first title of the year for Davydenko, who also won this tournament in 2004.
"I'm really happy to win today," Davydenko said. "Psychologically, it was my most difficult win at the Kremlin Cup."
This was the eighth career title for the 14th-ranked Dementieva, who had not beaten Williams in four previous matches. Williams, seeded fourth, had seven aces made 59 unforced errors.
"It was me," Williams said. "Every ball I hit I felt was out. It was so frustrating."
Dementieva was runner-up in 2001 and 2004.
"It's an incredible feeling when you win at home," she said. "I knew that if I did not beat Serena today, it would never happen again. I just stepped on the court and played my tennis."
Williams, ranked seventh, had not dropped a set on the way to her third final this season. She was playing in Moscow for the first time in a decade. In 1997, the 16-year-old Williams qualified and lost in the first round when she was ranked 448th.
Dementieva took control when she won four consecutive games in the second set. Williams broke in the third set but then lost six consecutive games. Dementieva closed the match when Williams returned wide.
"She played really unbelievable," Williams said. "She should try to play like that more often."
Davydenko broke the fourth-seeded Mathieu in the fifth game of the first set. But the Frenchman, who won the Kremlin Cup in 2002, tied it 4-4 before the Russian got a decisive break in the 11th game.
A break down in the second set, Mathieu saved two match points before making it 5-5. Davydenko then saved two set points in the 12th game to force a tiebreaker, and closed the match on his fourth match point with a backhand down the line.
Updated on Sunday