Defeat in Cincinnati costs Kerber number one spot


Angelique Kerber missed the opportunity to replace Serena Williams as the world number one as she was humbled 6-3 6-1 by Karolina Pliskova in the WTA Cincinatti Open final.

The German second seed was expected to be too strong for the 24-year-old Czech, who came into the tournament having never beaten a top five player at a WTA event.

But perhaps still jaded by her exertions at the Olympics where she claimed silver, Kerber failed to work her heavy-hitting opponent around the court and succumbed to defeat in just 62 minutes.

Williams, who withdrew from the tournament on Monday due to a shoulder injury, thus retains her place at the top of the women's game for a remarkable 184th consecutive week.

Pliskova, seeded 15, was understandably thrilled with her victory which capped off a memorable week in which she also upset the odds to down Svetlana Kuznetsova in the quarters and Spain's Garbine Muguruza to reach the final.

"First of all I would like to congratulate Angie," Pliskova said upon receiving the trophy.

"The whole year she has been doing a great job; I think you deserve to be number one, but maybe next time. 

"I would like to thank my team, I had a really nice week here with you guys. 

"They were supporting me every day and also the whole year, so thank you guys. Of course thanks to all the sponsors, it was a great event and I (would) love to come back next year."