Pliskova wins biggest clay title of career at Italian Open
By ANDREW DAMPF
AP Sports Writer
ROME (AP) - Karolina Pliskova captured the biggest clay-clay-court title of her career by beating Johanna Konta 6-3, 6-4 Sunday in the Italian Open final.
Adding to a very consistent year from the 2016 U.S. Open runner-up, the victory will move Pliskova up to No. 2 in the rankings and makes her one of the contenders for the French Open, which starts next weekend.
Pliskova also reached the Australian Open semifinals and the Miami Open final after opening this season with a title in Brisbane, Australia.
The unseeded Konta appeared nervous at the start, double faulting then landing a backhand into the net to hand Pliskova a break in her opening service game.
In the second set, Pliskova used a swinging forehand volley putaway to break for a 4-3 lead and never looked back.
Later on an overcast day at the Foro Italico, Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal were resuming their rivalry in the men's final.
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