Olympian proves too strong for Loveridge

OLYMPIAN Liu Na denied our own Alice Loveridge a hat-trick of Six Nations singles titles with a commanding straight sets win in yesterday's final at the GTTA Centre.

Olympian Liu Na lived up to her billing as the top seed by winning the Six Nations women's singles title. (Picture by Peter Frankland, 1282877)
Olympian Liu Na lived up to her billing as the top seed by winning the Six Nations women's singles title. (Picture by Peter Frankland, 1282877)

OLYMPIAN Liu Na denied our own Alice Loveridge a hat-trick of Six Nations singles titles with a commanding straight sets win in yesterday's final at the GTTA Centre.

Loveridge, who somehow survived two near-misses on the way to another final, could not raise her game a third time and lost to the Chinese exile playing in the colours of Ireland in straight sets, 3-11, 8-11, 6-11.

But the Guernsey star can pride herself on showing admirable grit in refusing to lie down when she stared defeat in the face both in the group stages, when the Scottish No. 1 Gillian Edwards led her by two sets to love, and in the quarter-finals, when the young Irish woman Ashley Givan, stormed into a two sets lead and had the home hope clinging on desperately.

Loveridge, who had scraped through 11-8 in the decider against Edwards, saved four match points against Givan before finally stealing a brilliantly dramatic fifth set, 20-18.