Black wins Big Island Championships
September 15, 2002
WAIKOLOA, Hawaii (AP) -- Cara Black became the first player from Zimbabwe to win a WTA Tour title, beating second-seeded Lisa Raymond 7-6 (1), 6-4 on Sunday in the Big Island Championships.
``It's unreal,'' the 23-year-old Black said. ``My coach (Brett ``Moose'' Stephens) and I were talking about it during the U.S. Open when I lost there, that this week would be a good opportunity to win some matches and maybe win my first title. It shows that if you believe a little and think about it you can do it.
``We had some unbelievable rallies out there and the difference was just one or two points. It just came down to a few points at the end of it and luckily I was the one who came through.''
Black led 5-2 in the opening set, but Raymond fought back to tie it at 5-5. Black regained control, taking the tiebreaker 7-1.
``If I could have gotten that under my belt maybe I would have relaxed a little bit,'' said Raymond, 3-7 in tour finals. ``Even losing the breaker I felt I could still win the match, but I just didn't get it done. She served well and she's really scrappy.''
Black, who earned $22,000, credited Stephens, also her boyfriend, who helped Pete Sampras win the U.S. Open.
``I wasn't really motivated enough the last couple years, and now I finally got my desire back,'' the 61st-ranked Black said. ``Brett's been a big part in that.''
In the doubles final, second-seeded Meilen Tu and Maria Vento-Kabchi beat the third-seeded team of Nannie De Villiers and Irina Selyutina 1-6, 6-2, 6-3.