Coco Gauff's first WTA Tour title at the Linz Open means the 15-year-old has the prize money to buy a Halloween costume she hopes will be the best in the sport.

The outstanding teenager, who starred at Wimbledon and the US Open, became the youngest champion on the main tour in 15 years as she defeated Jelena Ostapenko on Sunday.

The victory capped a sensational week for Gauff, who also claimed a landmark first win against a top-10 player when she downed world number eight Kiki Bertens in the quarter-finals.

Despite a fast-moving week, which started with the American entering the tournament as a lucky loser, Gauff has already made plans for her reported winnings of $43,000.

"I know Halloween is coming up and it's one of my favourite times of year," she said. "So I guess I'll splurge a little bit on my costume and make sure it's right.

"[The costume is] a secret, because I know last year they had a WTA contest for the best costumes, and I came in third. This year my goal is to come in first!"

Gauff drew huge crowds as she made grand slam breakthroughs at the All England Club and then at Flushing Meadows, yet she revealed she had not expected to be in contention for titles at the start of the season.

"I'm still overwhelmed and shocked," she said. "I guess it's crazy to say it's my first WTA title.

"This was definitely not on the calendar at the beginning of the year, because I didn't think I'd have a chance to get in. And now I'm the champion, so it's crazy."

Gauff is the first player this season to win on the tour as a lucky loser and added: "It's just literally insane that I got in as a lucky loser and now I'm the champion.

"My dad told me when I got in, before the first main-draw match, he said, 'You can't lose twice in the same tournament!'

"I'm sure he never thought it would come this far, to being the champion, but I guess he was right."

Alexander Zverev hailed Shanghai Masters champion Daniil Medvedev as a unique talent following Sunday's final.

World number four Medvedev continued his exceptional form with a 6-4 6-1 triumph over Zverev - who had knocked out Roger Federer in the quarters - to claim his fourth title of 2019 in style.

The US Open runner-up needed just an hour and 13-minutes to dismantle Zverev, who had enjoyed a resurgent week in Shanghai.

Zverev labelled the Russian as "the best player in the world right now" before and after Medvedev's convincing triumph, and the world number six believes the 23-year-old's unique style is what makes him such a special talent.

"Daniil is somebody that plays a way that we have never seen before," Zverev said.

"Maybe he doesn't do huge winners or jumping forehands or anything like that, but he plays a style that we have never seen before.

"He plays very flat. He plays with shots that you can't really do anything with the ball, I feel like, and that is difficult to play against him in an aggressive way.

"Sometimes that's maybe why it looks on TV or from the outside that players are not playing as aggressive against him as against others, but I feel like he doesn't let you."

Despite his defeat, Zverev was delighted with his overall performance at the ATP Masters 1000 event.

"I feel like I'm playing well. I feel like I'm on a very good path again," added Zverev, who made the semi-finals at the China Open following a disappointing North America swing.

"But obviously I have to be on this path for a longer period of time, I think. But making finals of a Masters [1000] is huge for me right now, and I'm very happy about that."

Rebecca Peterson won her second title of the 2019 Asian swing as she denied a resurgent Heather Watson at the Tianjin Open.

Having won the Jiangxi Open in Nanchang, Peterson overcame Watson 6-4 6-4 in a rain-delayed final.

The match was postponed by over five hours, with adverse weather during the warm-up then forcing a switch to an indoor court.

But the weather did not dampen Peterson's clinical performance, though Watson - who had knocked out second seed Wang Qiang and Bronx Open champion Magda Linette en route to the final - did take an early advantage.

Watson broke Peterson's first service game, but the Swede immediately rallied to break back at the fourth time of asking in the next game.

Another break followed to give Peterson a 5-4 lead, with the 24-year-old saving a break point to wrap up the set.

Watson started the second set on the front foot, only to concede two successive breaks - Peterson holding her serves as she cruised clear to claim the prize with her first match point.

Peterson's triumph will take her into the WTA's top 40, while Watson will move back into the top 100.

Coco Gauff claimed the first WTA Tour title of her career with a thrilling 6-3 1-6 6-2 victory over Jelena Ostapenko in the final of the Linz Open.

The 15-year-old American sensation was the youngest WTA finalist since Nicole Vaidisova won the Tashkent Open in 2004 and showed plenty of the form that saw her spring to grand slam prominence this year to take the first set.

Ostapenko, the 2017 French Open champion, rallied impressively both to level matters and delay a victory that marks the latest staging post in Gauff's rapid rise.

Gauff, who stunned world number eight Kiki Bertens in the quarter-finals, was forced to save a pair of break points in the first game but immediately got stuck in to the Ostapenko serve, opening up a 3-0 lead.

Playing her first final of 2019, Ostapenko settled well enough thereafter but Gauff looked imperious, shrugging off a double fault at the start of the ninth game to take the set.

Ostapenko finally got a look at her opponent's serve in set two as they exchanged breaks early on, before the weight of what she seemed set to accomplish appeared to hinder Gauff.

It meant the second went 6-1 to the world number 72 but the pedigree Gauff displayed en route to round four at Wimbledon and round three in the US Open came emphatically to the fore in the decider.

After dropping serve for 2-0, Ostapenko got involved in an animated exchange with the umpire, repeatedly asking the official, "Can you see the ball?"

At the next change of ends, newly appointed coach Marion Bartoli sought to settle her charge but Gauff was on a roll, and Ostapenko was forced to gamely repel a pair of match points at 5-0.

Those near misses knocked the teenager, who plopped a forehand into the net to be broken to love in the next game.

She regrouped superbly, however, as both players tore into each other with all-or-nothing groundstrokes. One of those from Ostapenko was shown to be long on a challenge and Gauff let out a scream of delight, embracing a landmark triumph.

Daniil Medvedev's remarkable 2019 continued with a straight-sets defeat of Alexander Zverev in the final of the Shanghai Masters on Sunday.

Medvedev, for whom it was a second 1000 Masters Series triumph of the year following his victory in Cincinnati, won 6-4 6-1 in an hour and 13 minutes with Zverev unable to cap a resurgent week in style.

The German was the architect of his own downfall in parts, particularly at the end of the first set, but Medvedev was a deserving winner, registering his tour-leading 59th victory of the season in his sixth successive final.

It was that form that prompted Zverev to describe his opponent as "the best player in the world right now", and Medvedev looked a man full of confidence in the early stages, quickly establishing a 3-0 lead.

Zverev hit back, though, displaying flashes of the form that saw him beat Roger Federer in the quarter-finals, by levelling it at 3-3.

It remained on serve until Medvedev's relentless baseline approach finally created pressure, under which Zverev buckled.

Serving at 4-5, 30-all, the German threw in two double faults to drop the first set and hand the Russian an advantage he never looked like relinquishing.

A missed break-point opportunity for Zverev at the start of the second set reinforced the suspicion it wasn't going to be his day, and more generosity from the fifth seed enabled Medvedev to break from 40-0 down to claim a 2-0 lead.

Another break made it 4-0 and although Zverev managed to avoid the bagel, he was powerless to prevent Medvedev from backing up his win in St Petersburg three weeks ago.

Medvedev, who has not dropped a set since going down in five to Rafael Nadal in the final of the US Open, said: "Shanghai is one of the most prestigious tournaments on the tour. It's really special to have my photo in the corridor."

On his remarkable run, he added: "It's something outrageous what I have done the past few months. It is how it is, I just take it and I hope I can do much more."

Coco Gauff says her run to a first WTA Tour final at the age of 15 shows she is ready to play at a top level.

Gauff needed a lucky loser spot to take her place in the main draw of the Linz Open after failing to qualify but could claim the title on Sunday following a 6-4 6-4 defeat of Andrea Petkovic.

The American, who reached the fourth round of Wimbledon and third round at the US Open this year, will face Jelena Ostapenko after the 2017 French Open champion booked her place in the final by beating Ekaterina Alexandrova.

Gauff saved nine of the 10 break points she faced in a superb defensive display, with the teenager thrilled by her continued rise.

"This is actually the first time in my life, including juniors, that I got into something as a lucky loser, and now I'm in the final," said Gauff. "I guess every little thing counts. You never know what it could lead to.

"Last year, around this time, I was playing a juniors Grade 1 [tournament], and I lost in the quarter-finals there, in Mexico. It's crazy how much a year can make a difference in improvement.

"I thought this was one of the highest-level matches I played, even though it was straight sets. No game was really easy to win, I felt, for either player.

"Andrea was playing an amazing match, and she was hitting a lot of winners and put a lot of pressure on me to put the ball deep. I guess I was fighting for every point, because you never know what happens.

"Maybe after these [earlier] matches, they boosted my confidence a lot. It kind of showed I can play at this top level, and hang with these top players."

Gauff, who enjoyed her first career top-10 win against Kiki Bertens in the quarter-finals in Austria, will move into the top 100 of the WTA rankings when they are updated on Monday.

Teenage sensation Coco Gauff will face Jelena Ostapenko in her first WTA Tour singles final after beating Andrea Petkovic in straight sets at the Linz Open. 

Gauff needed a lucky loser spot to take her place in the main draw after failing to qualify but could claim the title on Sunday following a 6-4 6-4 defeat of Petkovic. 

The 15-year-old American saved nine of 10 break points she faced and rallied from 2-0 down to win the first set before claiming the only break of the second to oust German Petkovic on Saturday. 

Gauff showed great defence and mixed up her game impressively, making Petkovic pay for a double fault which gave the teenager a 3-2 advantage in the second set. 

The Florida native, set to move into the top 100 in the rankings on Monday, won 71 per cent of points on her second serve and broke new ground when she put away a textbook volley. 

Ostapenko saved three match points in a battling 1-6 7-6 (7-5) 7-5 defeat of Ekaterina Alexandrova. 

The 2017 French Open champion showed her fighting spirit to reach a first singles final of the year after fending off a match point in the second set and another two in the decider. 

Daniil Medvedev reached his sixth consecutive ATP Tour final at the Shanghai Masters and will face Alexander Zverev in Sunday's showpiece.

The Russian continued his stunning second half of 2019 with a battling 7-6 (7-5) 7-5 win over Stefanos Tsitsipas in his semi-final match.

Zverev, meanwhile, followed up his quarter-final win over Roger Federer with a more straightforward last-four triumph over Matteo Berrettini.

US Open semi-finalist Berrettini was beaten 6-3 6-4 in 67 minutes.
 

MEDVEDEV IN ELITE COMPANY

Since Wimbledon, Medvedev has now reached the final of the Washington Open, Rogers Cup, Cincinnati Masters, US Open, St Petersburg Open and Shanghai Masters. 

If he can top Zverev in China, it will be his third win of those six championship matches. He has a record of 28-3 over that span.

The supreme streak puts Medvedev in elite company, as only four players have achieved a run of more consecutive finals. Those names are modern greats in Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer and Andy Murray.

"Making six finals in a row, including three Masters 1000s and one Grand Slam, is something I could never dream of," Medvedev said. 

"But I want to keep the momentum going and hope I can make it to seven or eight."

Medvedev has now reached a tour-leading nine finals in 2019. Indeed, no one else has made it to more than five.

The Russian has beaten Tsitsipas in all five of their head-to-head meetings, with his victory on Saturday taking one hour and 36 minutes

Tsitsipas had defeated Djokovic in the last eight to follow up on last week's run to the China Open final but fell short on the key points this time around.

He had the only three break points of an opening set dominated by serve when Medvedev was 0-40 down at 4-4, but could not convert any of them.

Medvedev then claimed a close tie-break when Tsitsipas sent a backhand off target, with only one point coming against serve.

The Greek star was broken in the third game of the second set and while he fought back to level at 5-5, he could not follow up with a hold as Medvedev immediately struck back.

Serving for the match, Medvedev held comfortably and claimed his first match point with a lethal volleyed forehand.

Tsitsipas said: "I don't know if I'm going to be able to beat him the next time or the time after that one, but I know there's going to be a time where I'm going to find opportunities and beat him. 

"I don't know when it's going to come. Probably two, three, four, five, six years' time, I don't know, but it's going to come at some point."
 

ZVEREV ON A ROLL

Zverev boosted his hopes of reaching the ATP Finals by reaching his first championship match since May and a first Masters final of 2019.

Seeking a fourth career Masters title, he has met Medvedev four times before and won on every occasion.

Zverev dispatched Berrettini – one of his rivals to secure a place in London – reasonably comfortably as his serve proved key, the Italian not even getting a break point in the match.

The German only lost two points on serve in the first set and, in a closer second, claimed his fourth break point of the game while returning at 4-4 to make the decisive breakthrough before holding serve to triumph.

Zverev, who had 11 aces, said: "It feels great, obviously. I felt like I've played some decent tennis this week and being in a Masters 1000 final here in Shanghai is also something very special for me.

"I'm looking forward to it and hopefully I can play some good tennis."

Rebecca Peterson reached her second WTA Tour final in the space of a month by booking a Tianjin Open clash against Heather Watson, who made her first showpiece since 2016.

Sweden's Peterson, a recent winner in Nanchang, recovered from a dreadful first set to defeat Ons Jabeur 0-6 6-4 7-5 in the first semi-final on Saturday.

She will meet Watson in the final of the WTA International event after the Briton won in straight sets against Veronika Kudermetova, triumphing 6-1 6-4 in 74 minutes.

Peterson suffered a bagel in the opener of her match, though the set was closer than the scoreline suggested as the first five games went to deuce.

In the second, Peterson missed a chance to serve it out at 5-3 but then broke Jabeur in the next game to level the contest.

She fell 3-1 behind in the decider before winning six of the last eight games to progress from a hard-fought encounter in two hours and six minutes.

"It was a really tough match," said Peterson. "[Jabeur] played well, I couldn't find my rhythm and I had to fight for every point so I'm happy that I got the win in the end."

Watson made her first WTA final in three-and-a-half years, winning the first set with ease as Kudermetova – ranked 80 places above her – did not earn a single a break point.

One break was enough to settle a closer second set, with world number 125 Watson converting her third match point.

She has won all of her previous three finals on the main tour, while Peterson's Jiangxi Open success in September was her only prior such contest.

Coco Gauff reached her first WTA Tour semi-final on Friday with a stunning win over world number eight Kiki Bertens at the Linz Open.

The 15-year-old, in the main draw as a lucky loser after initially failing to qualify, produced another demonstration of her enormous potential by claiming her first victory against a top-10 player.

American Gauff, who reached the fourth round at Wimbledon as the tournament's youngest Open era qualifier and then the third round at the US Open, saw off Dutch player Bertens 7-6 (7-1) 6-4 in an hour and 37 minutes.

She becomes the WTA Tour's youngest semi-finalist since 2004, when Nicole Vaidisova won in Tashkent.

The American, who will break into the top 100 as a result of her exploits in Austria, will face Andrea Petkovic on Saturday for a place in the final.

Petkovic beat Slovakian Viktoria Kuzmova 6-4 6-1, the German reaching her first semi-final of 2019.

The other last-four clash will see Russian Ekaterina Alexandrova take on Latvian Jelena Ostapenko.

Alexandrova dispatched Kristina Mladenovic 6-2 6-4 and former French Open champion Ostapenko overcame Elena Rybakina 7-5 6-1.

Andy Murray believes there is an outside chance he can return to the top of men's tennis, though his more pressing priority is the latest addition to his growing family.

Murray's wife Kim is expecting their third child this month and the latest stage of his comeback from hip resurfacing surgery at the European Open in Antwerp will be put on hold if the baby arrives early.

The three-time grand slam champion and former world number one has impressed in recent events and saw off a top-20 player in Matteo Berrettini at the China Open, though he lost in the quarter-finals to Dominic Thiem.

A thrilling second-round defeat to Fabio Fognini at the Shanghai Masters provided more reasons for optimism and the Australian Open confirmed Murray will be in the field at the first grand slam of 2020.

Having previously said it would be naive to expect him to return to his best, Murray provided a more upbeat projection of what the future may hold in an interview with The Times.

"I am surprised with how smooth it has been," Murray said of his comeback. "I had two years of having lots of pain after every single match. Now I play a match, the body hurts, I have some pain in my back, the muscles are tired and things like that, but my hip is fine and I couldn't remember what that was like before.

"It has been hard but I expected it to be quite a bumpy road because it wasn't something that has been done in tennis before. I know having done this that you will see way more athletes having this operation and coming back to compete, because there is no reason why you shouldn't be able to.

"There is no pain. The range of motion is the one thing that is a bit limited in some sports. I don't know if there are some sports in which that is more important than tennis. But it is great.

"I have been competitive so far. If I can keep improving a few things over the next few months, then maybe there is an outside chance I can get around there [the top of the sport]. But I am not going to be playing a similar schedule to what I played beforehand.

"If I do get up there, I'm not going to be focusing on ranking targets. You look at what Roger [Federer], Rafa [Nadal] and I guess Novak [Djokovic], to a certain extent, are doing to give themselves a chance to play longer.

"Right now, Rafa could be fighting to finish number one in the world and it's not a priority for him. I would like to be competitive in the big events against the best players. I'm not there yet, but I'm closer than I was a month ago, and much closer than a couple of months ago.

"I now know that it’s not important where or when I end my career. If I had another hip injury, I probably wouldn't keep going. I wouldn't want to do another six or seven months or rehab, because I feel I pretty much had two years of it.

"My hip could break and that would be it. I would be finished if that happened. But there is no sign of that happening any time soon. It seems to be getting stronger all the time."

On how the imminent arrival of his third child could alter his plans for the coming week in Belgium, Murray said: "Obviously the baby can come any time from pretty much next week.

"I would adjust my schedule if I couldn't go to Antwerp. My plan is to play Antwerp and then I am done through to the Davis Cup [in November]. If the baby came early, I would miss Antwerp and then maybe play at the Paris Masters [starting October 26]."

Roger Federer was impressed by Alexander Zverev's cool-headed approach as the German claimed a dramatic Shanghai Masters quarter-final win.

While the usually serene Federer lost his temper and suffered a point deduction in the deciding set after hitting a ball into the crowd in frustration, Zverev proved far more focused.

That served him well when, having squandered five match points in the second set, Zverev dusted himself down to win the third and seal a 6-3 6-7 (7-9) 6-3 victory.

Despite his own evident dissatisfaction, Federer had some kind words for his opponent after a fiery contest.

"I told him at the net that he showed great character, that he was strong," said the 20-time grand slam champion.

"I thought he didn't show any frustrations or too much negativity. I didn't see him very often being extremely frustrated except the one time when he hit three let cords in a row, the last game I think it was.

"That was impressive, because he has tendencies to get a bit down on himself, especially this season he hasn't been playing maybe so well, so that impressed me the most. 

"If I can get one per cent of that, I'm happy, too."

Matteo Berrettini is up next for Zverev, who reflected on a remarkable end to the second set, when he was on the brink of a far more straightforward success.

"Obviously I had three [match points] on my serve and two more in the tie-break," he said. "I played great tennis and didn't do unforced errors or anything like that.

"I knew if I keep playing the way I was playing in the first two sets I was going to have a chance in the third as well.

"I don't think Roger Federer's game suits anybody to be honest. He is the greatest player of all time. He will always find a way and make it tricky for you like he did with me.

"You have always got to play your best tennis to have a chance."

Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer both suffered quarter-final exits at the Shanghai Masters on Friday, guaranteeing a first-time winner of the tournament this year. 

The top two seeds were widely expected to contest the final but succumbed to Stefanos Tsitsipas and Alexander Zverev respectively.

Daniil Medvedev and Matteo Berrettini also secured their progress to settle the semi-final line-up in China.

And there was an added bonus for Tsitsipas as he claimed a spot at the ATP Finals. 

DJOKOVIC DOWNED BY TSITSIPAS' 'BEST COMEBACK'

Tsitsipas recovered from a set down to beat reigning champion Djokovic 3-6 7-5 6-3 and labelled it his "best comeback".

The Greek will now face Medvedev in the last four, having earned an end-of-season Finals spot courtesy of the Russian's 6-3 7-6 (7-4) win over Fabio Fognini.

"It's the best comeback that I have ever had, probably," said Tsitsipas.

"I would say also [the] Federer comeback in the Australian Open wasn't easy. I lost the first set against one of the best tennis players in the world and managed to win three consecutive sets after that.

"Same today, but with less sets, two sets, which was quite difficult for me to pull out. It was a very difficult victory mentally, too.

"I wasn't really thinking that long term that I have to win two sets. It just went step by step. It happened."

FRUSTRATED FEDERER FALLS TO ZVEREV

Federer is usually a picture of calm on the tennis court, but he was evidently ruffled in his 6-3 6-7 (7-9) 6-3 loss to Zverev.

The Swiss, who rescued five match points to win a remarkable second set, was docked a point in the fourth game of the decider after hitting the ball into the crowd in anger.

His frustration may have stemmed from an inability to find his rhythm against an inspired Zverev, who was 40-0 up when serving for the match in the second set.

Having seemingly thrown his chances away, Zverev dug deep and broke Federer at the first opportunity in the final set to claim an advantage he refused to surrender. 

Berrettini awaits, the Italian having overcome Dominic Thiem 7-6 (10-8) 6-4.

Heather Watson continued her surprise run at the Tianjin Open by beating Magda Linette to reach the semi-finals after saving four match points on Friday.

The Brit had not won a hard-court match on the WTA Tour for over a year before this week, but is two wins away from being crowned champion after a 7-5 6-7 (4-7) 7-6 (8-6) victory over the eighth seed.

World number 125 Watson was taken the distance after seeing a match point come and go in the second set and forced a tie-break after Linette had four chances to wrap up the quarter-final.

The unseeded Watson eventually prevailed by securing a ninth mini-break in the final set and will face Veronika Kudermetova in the last four.

Russian Kudermetova toppled third seed Dayana Yastremska 6-4 6-0 in a battle of heavy hitters.

There will be no seeds in the semi-finals after Ons Jabeur defeated Yulia Putintseva 7-6 (7-5) 7-6 (7-4). 

Jabeur will come up against Rebecca Peterson with a place in the final at stake following the Swede's 6-7 (5-7) 6-4 6-2 success against home hope Wang Yafan.

Alexander Zverev ended a frustrated Roger Federer's hopes of a third Shanghai Masters title as he claimed a stunning 6-3 6-7 (7-9) 6-3 quarter-final triumph.

The German took his head-to-head record against the 20-time grand slam champion to 4-3 with a display of immense quality and huge character. 

Federer, winner of the title in 2014 and 2017, frequently showed his displeasure and repeatedly argued with the umpire, even landing a point penalty after hitting the ball into the crowd in anger.

But his unrest was largely down to the brilliance of Zverev, who defiantly overcame the setback of missing out on five match-point openings in the second set.

The result came after reigning champion Novak Djokovic had already been dumped out by Stefanos Tsitsipas.

It was Zverev who forged ahead, seizing on a break-point opening that came after a stinging forehand return winner.

He then confidently held serve for a 5-2 lead as Zverev continued to look the more settled of the two, a fact further underlined when he served out the final game of the set to love.

Federer offered a swift riposte at the start of the second set, clinching a break after settling a lengthy rally with a deft drop shot that Zverev could only lob wide on the stretch. 

But Zverev refused to wilt and, showing remarkable power and accuracy to dictate matters from the baseline, he clawed his way back to level terms. 

Serving at 5-5, Federer failed to land a first serve and found an inspired Zverev on the other side of the net, the 22-year-old battling hard to stay in a point that he ended up winning with a glorious, laser-like forehand down the line.

Federer produced his best tennis at 40-0 down, rescuing himself from the brink with a series of inspired shots to force a tie-break in which he survived two more match points before levelling things up.

To Zverev's credit, he was soon back on the offensive and raced into a 3-0 lead in the decider, dropping only two points in the process.

He clung fiercely to that advantage against an uncharacteristically irritable Federer, who was docked a point in game four after striking a ball away in anger, having already been warned for doing so earlier.

Despite saving the two break points that resulted from that penalty, there was no way back for Federer as Zverev sealed a memorable win in a contest lasting more than two hours. 

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