Palermo, Sicily - Defending champion Anabel Medina Garrigues of Spain won the Palermo International for a record fourth time on Sunday, beating Tathiana Garbin of Italy 6-4, 6-4.

It was Medina Garrigues' third straight crown on the clay of Palermo, where she also won in 2001, her second tournament victory this year and sixth WTA Tour title.

Garbin - a wild-card bidding to become the first Italian to win the tournament in its 16-year history - raced to a 3-0 lead in the first set before the second-seeded Spaniard began to impose her game with some fierce groundstroke play.

Medina Garrigues broke Garbin in the fifth and ninth games, held her serve to win the first set and won the match with a characteristic crosscourt forehand winner.

"I am really happy with this victory," Medina Garrigues said. "I played a good game today and I did well, particularly at the important moments, not to allow my opponent back into the game."

Medina Garrigues, who has never lost in a Palermo final, lost only one set in five matches this week. - Sapa-AP