Garcia outlasts Barty to claim landmark win in Wuhan
Caroline Garcia broke new ground on Saturday as she battled back from a set and a break down to beat fellow surprise package Ashleigh Barty to Wuhan Open glory.
Having significantly exceeded expectations by reaching the final of the WTA Premier 5 event, both players were facing the biggest match of their respective careers and appeared understandably nervy throughout an error-strewn contest.
France's Garcia eventually proved the stronger, though, as she staged an impressive comeback to triumph 6-7 (3-7) 7-6 (7-4) 6-2.
Barty - who knocked out three top-10 players on her way to the final - twice served for the match in the second set, but could not get over the winning line and Garcia ultimately won the decider with ease.
Garcia made the stronger start, only to falter on two occasions when serving for the opening set, which was duly won by Barty in a tie-break.
Barty then broke her rival four times in set two, but repeatedly gave up her advantage as both players seemingly struggled to handle the pressure.
After two dramatic sets, the decider proved disappointingly one-sided, with Barty unable to regain the momentum she had lost.