June 17, 2007 / 7:23 PM / 12 years ago

Jankovic downs Sharapova to claim Birmingham title

Russia's Maria Sharapova returns a shot to Tamira Paszek of Austria during their match at the Birmingham Classic in Birmingham, England, June 16, 2007. REUTERS/Darren Staples

LONDON (Reuters) - Jelena Jankovic finally ended a losing run against Maria Sharapova to claim her first grasscourt title with a 4-6 6-3 7-5 win in the final of the rain-hit Birmingham Classic on Sunday.

After both players had successfully steered past their semi-final opponents earlier in the day, Jankovic overcame a first-set hiccup to beat the top seed.

It was the Serbian second seed’s fourth title of the year and she underlined her reputation as an all-court player by adding the Birmingham triumph to her successes in Auckland (hardcourt), Charleston and Rome (both clay).

Before Sunday, Jankovic had lost all three of her meetings against the Russian.

Jankovic beat Italian eighth seed Mara Santangelo 6-1 7-5 in the semis, while Sharapova overwhelmed fifth seed Marion Bartoli 7-5 6-0.

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