Stephens takes Charleston WTA title

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Stephens takes Charleston WTA title

American Sloane Stephens has outlasted Elena Vesnina to capture her third WTA title this year with a 7-6 (7-4) 6-2 victory at the event in Charleston.

The seventh-seeded Stephens squandered a 5-2 lead in the opening set on Sunday before prevailing in a tiebreaker.

She let three match points disappear in the contest’s final game before Vesnina hit her service return wide to secure the match.

The 23-year-old Stephens won her fourth career tournament and third of 2016, adding the year’s first clay court event to victories at Auckland and Acapulco.

She advanced to the final when Australian Open champ Angelique Kerber, the top seed, retired in the semifinals Saturday.

Vesnina, who had to qualify last weekend to make the main draw, showed her grit despite playing her eighth match of the tournament.

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