Rome, May 19: Karolina Pliskova sealed her second title of the season by defeating Johanna Konta in straight sets in the final of the Internazionali d'Italia on Sunday.
Pliskova has been blighted by illness since she finished as runner-up at the Miami Open in March, but she was in fine form as she overcame Konta 6-3 6-4 to become the first Czech to win the women's singles in Rome since 1978.
The 27-year-old, who lost in the second round in Stuttgart and Madrid, will consequently move up to second in the rankings ahead of the French Open.
Pliskova dropped just two sets across the entire tournament, during which she did not have to face a single seed.
She gets title No. with a 6-3, 6-4 win over Konta 🇮🇹 pic.twitter.com/irRXpQvDLp— WTA (@WTA) May 19, 2019
Konta was broken in her first service game when she found the net after a double fault and, although she saved a set point with a fine cross-court forehand, she missed a glorious chance to break back in the next.
The fourth seed held from there to take the opener and Konta - who reached the final in Rabat this month - managed to save a break point to avoid immediately falling behind in the second.
Pliskova threw her racket in frustration after failing to convert a third break point in game seven, but a brilliant forehand saw her get the job done at the fifth time of asking in the set.
Konta staved off a pair of match points to get to deuce but buried a forehand into the net to give Pliskova the trophy.