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SIbling revenge as Pliskova beats Robson in final

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Originally published on: 26/02/10 11:53

An exhausted Laura Robson fell in the Australian Open girls’ final for the second year running, losing 6-1 7-6(5) to Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic.

After an error-strewn first set the Aussie-born Brit rallied in the second before a pair of untimely double faults let the tiebreak and the title slip away.

“I wasn’t really nervous I was just not quick off the mark and she took advantage of that,” she said of her slow start. “In the first set I didn’t play well so I started getting a bit annoyed with that.

“Just a bit exhausted with it, everything – now it’s just good to go home”

“But she served really well in the whole match so I was just looking for a chance to break her and I finally got one and then in the tie-break I let myself down a bit.

“I didn’t hit any double faults until the tie-break so at that point I just lost focus.

“I’m tired, but I’ve had a really good month in Australia so I can go home happy. I’ve played a lot of matches and so it’s just good to go home.”

The 16-year-old partnered Andy Murray to the Hopman Cup final ahead of the year’s opening Slam, earning herself a wildcard into the qualifying draw in Melbourne, where she was knocked out in the second round.

Robson was then drafted in as a last-minute replacement to partner Sally Peers in the women’s doubles draw, with the duo reaching the quarter-finals – with the junior singles event in full swing.

Despite that, the unseeded Robson swept through the junior event draw, only being truly pushed by No.11 seed Yulia Putintseva in her second round match prior to the final, and beating Pliskova’s twin sister Kristyna in the semis.

But in the final the exertions of the past month caught up with her. In the first set, left-hander was unable to cope with her tall Czech opponent’s groundstrokes, making a series of errors.

She improved her game in the second, sending it to a tiebreak, but Pliskova raced to a 4-1 lead and sealed the title on her second match point when Robson double-faulted once more.

“My sister give me something and coach also, so I know everything about her,” 17-year-old Pliskova said. “I think in the first set she played bad. Not bad, but so many mistakes. In the second, she was better.”

Despite the disappointment of another final defeat – she lost to Ksenia Pervak last year – Robson recognised the positives to be taken from her month in Australia, but admitted she was looking forward to the flight home.

“Starting with Perth, getting to the final there, then quarters of doubles, then getting to the final here – I’ve played a lot of matches,” she said.

“Just a bit exhausted with it, everything. So I think now it’s just good to go home.”

In the boys’ event, Brazil’s Tiago Fernandes, who turned 17 on Friday, overcame Australia’s Sean Berman 7-5 6-3 to win the boy’s title.

“I think it was maybe he was a little bit nervous to play, you know, the final with the Australian people,” said Fernandes.

There was success for Britain in the wheelchair event, as Peter Norfolk won the quad singles title in Melbourne with a straight sets triumph over American David Wagner.

World No.1 Norfolk, 49, secured a 6-2 7-6(4) success in one hour 35 minutes on Margaret Court Arena.

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