Sports

Halep tops Pliskova for Dubai title

Dubai, United Arab Emirates (SportsNetwork.com) - Simona Halep captured her second title of the year Saturday with a straight-set victory over Karolina Pliskova in the final at the Dubai Tennis Championships.

The top-seeded Romanian earned a 6-4, 7-6 (7-4) triumph for her 10th career title. She also won the season-opener in Shenzhen last month and Saturday's win gave her a record of 10-6 lifetime in finals.

"I'm very happy right now," said Halep. "It's an amazing title for me. It's very important for my career. I'm really happy and just want to enjoy this moment."

Halep broke serve in the seventh game to take the first set, then had two chances to serve it out in the second set. Pliskova, though, broke serve in the 10th and 12th games to force a tiebreaker.

The Czech held a 4-3 lead in the tiebreak, but Halep won the final four points to secure her second Premier 5 level win. Her first came last year in Doha. She will also rise to No. 3 in the world rankings next week.

Pliskova fell to 3-5 in title matches, including 0-2 this year. She also lost in Sydney, falling to Petra Kvitova in two tiebreaks.

"I lost, so I'm not really happy right now, but obviously I'm happy for the week and for the last two or three weeks I had," said Pliskova, who also reached the third round at the Australian Open and advanced to the semifinals last week in Belgium.

Saturday's setback also left the 22-year-old Pliskova 0-7 lifetime against top-five opponents.

Halep claimed a first prize of $456,000.