Diede De Groot Utrecht Champion

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retained her singles title in emphatic fashion before partnering compatriot Aniek Van Koot to triumph together in the doubles final.

De Groot thrashed second seed Yui Kamiji 6-0 6-2 in only 54 minutes to hold the trophy aloft without dropping a set in any of her games this week.

“I think the last few weeks I have been training on some things, and I had to believe in it,” said Diede. “Last week we played against each other, and it was a third-set tiebreak, and it was really tough mentally, because I had some match points but I didn’t use them.

“And then now I just really wanted to just play well and enjoy it, and that’s what I did.”

Doubles partner Van Koot hailed her game:

“I saw the match, as well. I think for Yui, it was obvious that there was nothing that she could get today for free.”

It was as commanding a victory as it sounds, leaving a delighted De Groot reflecting on a second title in Melbourne. She said: “I really enjoy playing here, of course I’m happy I played so well today. Winning another title is very special for me, it means so much.”

The Dutch duo then won 5-7 7-6 10-8 in an epic clash against second seeds Marjolein Buis with Sabine Ellerbrock in the doubles final.

“I think we had a plan beforehand, and in the end, in the tiebreak, I think we managed to tell each other, ‘stick to the plan,’ to not do something different,” added Van Koot. “It was really tight. It could have gone both ways, I’m just really happy with it.”

Diede De Groot has now completed her ‘Grand Slam’ of doubles titles, while Van Koot clinched her fourth Australian Open doubles trophy.

“It always means a lot to compete at the Australian Open. And to be able to win a Grand Slam together, together with Diede, we are going to play more doubles together this year,” said Van Koot, inspired by her partner’s exploits earlier on Saturday. “It’s terrific to win it and to end it on a winning streak.

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Jon Wilkins

Jon Wilkins

Jon Wilkins is Welsh and lives in England. He is a writer. A Europhile and Remainer, he is a regular visitor to Utrecht and has set his crime novel series in the city.

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