Former world No. 1 Angelique Kerber admitted Ashleigh Barty played better in the key moments of their Cincinnati Masters semifinal clash.
Barty, seeded at No. 1, claimed a 6-2 7-5 win over Kerber to progress into the Cincinnati Masters final.
Barty ended up winning the title as in the final as she saw off Jil Teichmann in straight sets.
Despite the loss to Barty, Kerber was happy with her Cincinnati campaign and she enters the US Open in positive spirits.
“You know, I think, yeah, she played well. She starts playing really aggressive, and, yeah, I was just trying to finding my rhythm. You know, I tried to come back in the second set and I had my chances, but, yeah, I think she played really well in important moments and closed the match on her way.
“I think she served really well the whole match. I think that was maybe the key that, yeah, that I didn’t get too much chances on the returning games.
“Yeah, but on the other way, I think I am pretty happy about my result this week and had good matches before going to New York next week.”
Kerber explains what makes Barty so tough opponent
Barty has had a big year so far, making six finals.
Barty has been pretty efficient in finals played this year as she has captured five titles so far in 2021.
Barty’s biggest title of the season came at Wimbledon.
“You know, I think she has so much confidence right now. She plays so well, and she served good. I think this is also a big weapon from her,” Kerber explained.
“You know, she’s just playing really like tricky, as well. She know where to put the ball and how to play in the moments where it’s really important.
“So I think the whole game of hers is really tough, and, you know, that’s why she’s there where she is.”