Unperturbed by recent events, the people of Manchester came out in numbers throughout the week of the Aegon Manchester Trophy 2017 - that culminated in a pulsating final between Zarina Diyas and the Russian-born Serbian, Aleksandra Krunic.

The above-mentioned final topped off a great week in respect of putting tennis on the map in the north of England and, particularly, for the hosts - the Northern Lawn Tennis Club, West Didsbury. Recent events in Manchester did not dampen the spirits of players or spectators. Tennis was definitely the biggest winner this week.

Zarina Diyas defies 207 world ranking to take the title on finals day

Sunday 18th June 2017 - saw the delightful Diyas continue her strategy of dominating from the back of the court - not an easy feat on grass - to come from behind in each set to defeat Krunic 6-4, 6-4. At the start of the tournament, Krunic was ranked 106 places above Diyas. However, this doesn't tell the whole story, as Diyas has a career high of 31, but an injury forced her ranking down. This result will help her get back to a ranking that reflects her undoubted, potential talent and ability.

Aleksandra Krunic couldn't cope, in the end, with the grinding strategy of Diyas, but has still had a good week all the same. Beating British young gun: GabriellaTaylor in straight sets in the quarter-finals, before taking advantage of the fact that the talented Belarusian Aryna Sabalenka was fatigued from a marathon match the day before and picked up an injury, to win in the semi's 6-0, 6-2.

This week's good showing will give the Serb a great shot at bettering her best performance at Wimbledon this year, by progressing beyond the 3rd round.

A good week for local girl: Naomi Broady

Before being bullied from the baseline in the semi-final by eventual winner: Zarina Diyas, Stockport's Naomi Broady delighted the locals with some assured performances for a deep run.

This included a straight sets victory over top seed Kai-Chen Chan- a 29-year-old Chinese Taipei player. This was Broady's best match by far, as she mixed up a powerful first serve with drop shots and adept volleying. Unfortunately, in the next round, Diyas simply played past her from the baseline. However, it gives confidence in Naomi ahead of Wimbledon, whereby she waits nervously for a potential wild card.

She has already exceeded last year's grass season performances, whereby she did not win a match.

Sabalenka v Blinkova in the quarter-finals was the match of the tournament

Late Friday afternoon - two young upstarts: Aryna Sabalenka (19 years old) and 18-year-old Anna Blinkova (Russia), entertained with a pulsating, no-holds-barred, three set match that had about everything, there was momentum swings galore. Sabalenka eventually triumphed 7-6, 5-7, 6-3. Sabalenka's vociferous remonstrating at bad shots in Belarusian, kept the crowd entertained, as she cut a captivating figure on the court.

This match underlined the importance of events like this: the future of women's tennis is bright.