Published April 07, 2017 12:11 by WTAtennis.com
The Russian veteran found the California desert an oasis early on, reversing a 0-2 head-to-head against Shelby Rogers just to win her opening round match.
“I guess every win for me here was a turnaround. The first big win for me was against Angelique Kerber. She’s a great player. I showed good tennis against her. I went there, and I just played really solid, clean, smart. I used my chances.
“And against Venus, you know, it’s never easy to play against her in the big stadium when everybody is supporting her. All the matches were kind of like turnarounds for me. Every single match was so difficult against such good players, you know. I will remember every win from this tournament here.”
After surviving the heat and Hungary’s Timea Babos, she played emphatic tennis to beat Kerber, resilient tennis against Venus Williams, and a combination of both to withstand late surges from an in-form Kristina Mladenovic.
All of that was a prelude to the all-Russian final between Vesnina and Svetlana Kuznetsova, a 6-7(6), 7-5, 6-4 epic that may well go down as the greatest matches of the year.
“All the conditions were today for Svetlana,” she told WTA Insider in her Champions Corner interview. “I think I had four matches under the lights, at night. The ball flies differently. I was using the same racquet tension at night. Today I went two kilos higher.
“Playing a final at 11am was new to me. I played a lot of finals on the WTA and most of the finals are later in the afternoon. I think we showed a great final today, playing this three-hour match.
“When I looked at the clock it was already two hours something, I knew we were staying long here. I feel like it was a great final to watch and great final to play as well.”
Taking the title in just over three hours, Vesnina earned a career-high ranking of No.13 and earned the mantle of March’s WTA Player of the Month!
Final Results for March’s WTA Player Of The Month
How it works:
Finalists are selected by wtatennis.com
Winner is then determined by a fan vote on wtatennis.com