Azarenka loses tennis top spot to Williams despite Qatar win

DEFENDING champion Victoria Azarenka ended a horror 10-match losing streak against Serena Williams in style after she beat the American to win the Qatar Open.

The Belarusian beat Williams 7-6, 2-6, 6-3 to win her 16th title and extended her current winning streak to 14 matches, including her second Australian Open title.

Despite the her triumph, Azarenka, who had not beaten Williams since 2009 in Miami, gave up her world No.1 ranking to Williams.

To get it back, Azarenka needs to reach the final in Dubai this week and would need to beat Williams in the title match to do so.

On the other side of the world, Spaniard Rafael Nadal won his first title since his return from a seven-month knee injury layoff after beating Argentina's David Nalbandian 6-2 6-3 in the Brazil Open final in Sao Paulo yesterday.

It took the former world No.1 and current No.5 just 78 minutes to beat Nalbandian, who was playing in a final for the first time since he was disqualified for kicking an advertisement board and injuring a line judge at Queen's last June.