Belgium’s Justine Henin won her third straight French Open title and fourth in total with victory over Serbia’s Ana Ivanovic in Saturday’s final.
The Belgian overcame a nervous opening game to win 6-1 6-2 and claim the sixth Grand Slam crown of her career.
Ivanovic broke the champion in the opening game but let the advantage slip immediately and never recovered.
Henin swept through the first set and broke early in the second on her way to winning in just 65 minutes.
“It’s surreal to win for the third time in a row,” she said. “I am struggling to take it in.”
Ivanovic admitted that the key moment came as early as the second game when she failed to consolidate an early break of the Henin serve.
“I started getting a little bit nervous, my ball toss went everywhere, but she’s a very, very good player and it’s tough to beat her,” said the 19-year-old.
The 25-year-old Henin, who also won in 2003, is the first woman since Monica Seles in 1992 to win three successive titles at Roland Garros.
She was helped by 31 unforced errors and some very wayward serving from her inexperienced opponent.
It was all a great contrast from the excellent start made by Ivanovic, who hit two forehand winners on her way to breaking serve in game one.
The teenager went 40-0 up in the following game but was then struck by problems with her ball toss and Henin roared back to take the game with the help of a net-cord.
A run of eight successive games swung the match dramatically in the champion’s favour and, despite a slight resurgence from Ivanovic in the closing moments, the result was never in doubt.
Henin stormed to the net on match point and punched away a forehand volley to consolidate her position as the premier clay-courter in the women’s game.