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Katie Boulter beats Karolina Pliskova to retain Nottingham Open title

Katie Boulter celebrates with the trophy after winning the Nottingham Open (Mike Egerton/PA)
Katie Boulter celebrates with the trophy after winning the Nottingham Open (Mike Egerton/PA)

Katie Boulter won the Rothesay Open in Nottingham for the second successive year as Britain enjoyed a super Sunday, with Jack Draper also winning a title in Germany.

Boulter kicked off a fine 12 months by winning her home tournament last year and returned to do the double in 2024, beating Karolina Pliskova in the final.

The British number one, who earlier beat compatriot Emma Raducanu in the semi-final, prevailed 4-6 6-3 6-2 to claim a third WTA Tour title.

It made for a great day for Britain after Draper claimed his maiden title by winning the Stuttgart Open earlier on Sunday, while Boulter proved she is also in perfect harmony with her boyfriend Alex de Minaur as he won in the Netherlands – the second time the pair have won titles in the same week.

Boulter will be hoping her repeat success can have the same impact as 12 months ago and she will be targeting a deep run at Wimbledon next month and also hope to break into the world’s top 20 for the first time.

Pliskova, who also played her semi-final earlier on Sunday, was defeated in Nottingham for the first time, having won the title in her only previous appearance in 2016.

Boulter joked that De Minaur would be in trouble after failing to make the quick jaunt from ‘s-Hertogenbosch to watch.

“This is a little bit of deja vu, I’m not entirely sure if I am dreaming or this has happened,” she said.

Katie Boulter punches the air after winning the Nottingham Open
Boulter won in Nottingham for the second sucessive year (Mike Egerton/PA)

“It is incredible to be here, it’s got a special place in my heart, it always will do. It’s been an incredible week for me, mentally tough after a really hard clay court season.

“My boyfriend didn’t make the trip even though I thought he might after his win in Hertogenbosch so we will have to be talking about that tonight and see if we are still together!

“I hope he is listening to this, we have got some talking to do! It’s been a great week for me.”

With England’s Euro 2024 opener looming, Boulter looked like she wanted to get the job done quickly and raced into a 4-2 lead in the opening set.

But Pliskova reeled off four successive games to claim the first set.

Boutler rallied, though, again claiming an early break in the second set and this time she held on to it, serving it out to level up.

With the momentum behind her she assumed control by breaking Pliskova twice in the decider to seal more glory.

She earlier reminded everyone why she is the British number one after beating Raducanu in the battle of Britain.

Despite the semi-final defeat, which lasted over three hours, it was a positive week for Raducanu in her first tournament in seven weeks as she carefully manages her return following double wrist and ankle surgery last year.

She competed well throughout and felt so strong after her match that she decided to do a round of interval training.

 

“I feel really good, after the match I went and did intervals,” she said. “I feel strong, I feel like I could play tomorrow, I am just shaking off a bit of a bug and cold but otherwise physically I am great.

“For me it was a good start to grass court season, it was nice to get some matches. I am disappointed, but Katie played and served in particularly really well.”

In the men’s Challenger event, Briton Jack Fearnley earned the biggest title of his career after beating compatriot Charles Broom 4-6 6-4 6-3.

In ‘s-Hertogenbosch, Boulter’s partner De Minaur won the Libema Open after a straight-sets win over Sebastian Korda while Russian Liudmila Samsonova beat Bianca Andreescu 4-6 6-3 7-5 in the women’s tournament.