Sabalenka beats Kvitova in straight sets to win Qatar Open

Belarusian Aryna Sabalenka reacts after she got a point against Romania's Simona Halep during a match of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championship in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Thursday, Feb. 20, 2020. (Kamran Jebreili/AP)

DOHA, Qatar — Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus won the sixth title of her career with a 6-3, 6-3 victory over Petra Kvitova in the Qatar Open final on Saturday.

The 21-year-old Sabalenka needed less than 75 minutes to complete the win, sending down seven aces and hitting 21 winners in clinching her third title in six months — after those in Wuhan and Zhuhai.

Sabalenka sealed the first set with an ace, and survived five break points against the two-time Wimbledon champion in the fourth game of the second set.

Kvitova sent a volley wide to give Sabalenka the title on her fourth championship point.

Kvitova beat No. 1-ranked Ashleigh Barty on Friday for the first time in more than a year to play for her second Qatar Open title. The Czech player won the 2018 final against Garbine Muguruza,

Ninth-seeded Sabalenka and eighth-seeded Kvitova are now 2-2 head-to-head.

Kvitova was playing for her 29th title, and first since April.

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