Watson wins Japan title

Tokyo – Heather Watson became the first Briton to win a WTA singles title in 24 years by beating Taiwan's Chang Kai-chen 7-5 5-7 7-6 in the final of the Japan Open in Osaka on Sunday.

The British No 2 succeeded where Laura Robson had failed in Guangzhou last month to become the country's first winner on the women's tour since Sara Gomer in 1988.

Heather Watson of Britain. Credit: AP

Before Robson and Watson the last Briton to reach a WTA final was Jo Durie at Newport in 1990 – before either player was born.

Watson had demonstrated her potential by pushing French Open champion Maria Sharapova to three sets in Tokyo last month, the Russian tipping her to be a future winner.

The 20-year-old from Guernsey had already surpassed her career-best results on the WTA Tour – three quarter-finals last year. – Reuters

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