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Hantuchova wins Pattaya Open again

Daniela Hantuchova, shown in a 2010 file photo, claimed a win over Maria Kirilenko in a long three-set match Sunday in the finals of the PTT Pattaya Open in Thailand. UPI Photo/Monika Graff.
Daniela Hantuchova, shown in a 2010 file photo, claimed a win over Maria Kirilenko in a long three-set match Sunday in the finals of the PTT Pattaya Open in Thailand. UPI Photo/Monika Graff. | License Photo

PATTAYA CITY, Thailand, Feb. 12 (UPI) -- Daniela Hantuchova defended her PTT Pattaya Open title with a marathon three-set, come-from-behind win Sunday over Maria Kirilenko in Thailand.

Hantuchova, the No. 3 seed, got by Kirilenko 6-7, (4-7), 6-3, 6-3 in a match that took 3 hours, 14 minutes. It was a much different battle than the 6-0, 6-2 decision Hantuchova took over Sara Errani for the 2011 Pattaya title.

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Last year, Hantuchova finished things quickly in the championship match but in 2012 Kirilenko fought off 6-of-7 break points to force a tiebreaker, which she won.

Hantuchova had a pair of breaks, however, to even the match after the second and two more in the thirds gave her the title. She won nearly two-thirds of the points on serve against Kirilenko.

Hantuchova improved to a 5-9 in WTA title matches, with the Pattaya wins are her only championships since 2007.

Kirilenko, making her first champion match since October 2010, fell to 5-5 in finals.

Hantuchova collected $37,000 for the win while Kirilenko, who was seeded fourth this week, took home $19,100.

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