In a disappointing final at the PNB Paribas Open in Indian Wells, California, on Sunday afternoon, Italian 20th seed, Flavia Pennetta raised the trophy after having beaten the 2nd seed, a very injured Aga Radwanska in straight sets 6-2 6-1. Last summer Pannetta, now aged 32, was ranked just inside the top 200 after returning to the game after a long injury period. In hot and dry desert conditions, Radwanska came on court with her usual right shoulder strapping, but also with her left knee taped, to take on the Italian who had beaten her earlier this year in easy straight sets in Dubai. Their previous meeting was in 2012 at this tournament, a match which the Pole won in straight sets in the second round.
Radwanska started the first set and battled to win the first game, but the players both held until the Pole seemed to lose her concentration and was broken in the 5th fame and went on to take the next three games and the set at 6-2. Radwanska made an uncharacteristic 18 unforced errors to her opponent’s 11; and had 7 winners to the Italian’s 9. The Pole started the second set and held, but called for the trainer to strap her left knee. Pannetta held and then Radwanska had more tape applied during the sit down but at this point she could not run and was clearly sufferering. The Italian kept her focus even after Radwanska had still more tape applied and cruised through the next four games to the title, a cheque for US$ 1 million and the biggest win of her career.