Garbine Muguruza downs Anett Kontaveit to lift maiden WTA Finals title

The No.6 seed from Spain defeated No.8 seed Anett Kontaveit of Estonia 6-3, 7-5 to capture her third and biggest title of the year.

Garbine Muguruza celebrates a victory at WTA Finals; Credit: [email protected]

No.6 seed Garbine Muguruza captured her 10th career WTA singles title, which also turned out to be her first Akron WTA Finals championship. The 28-year-old from Spain got past No.8 seed Anett Kontaveit of Estonia 6-3, 7-5 to capture her third and biggest title of the year on Wednesday night in front of the Guadalajara crowd. Fighting from a break down in the second set, Muguruza won the last four games of the match to seal the deal. It is to be noted that Muguruza is the first Spaniard to win the WTA Finals singles title in the tournament’s history. Former World No.1 Arantxa Sanchez Vicario was the only other player from Spain to reach the WTA Finals singles championship match when she finished as runner-up to Stefanie Graf in 1993.

“Right now I feel extremely happy and relieved because it’s a tournament that I’ve struggled at the beginning, then I managed to play well,” Muguruza said in her post-match press conference. “I think I’m staying composed a little bit now because it means really a lot to me to win such a big, big, big tournament, the [WTA Finals] in Latin America, here in Mexico. I think it’s just perfect.

“I’m just very happy I proved to myself once again I can be the best, I can be the maestra, like how we say in Spanish. That puts me in a very good position for next year, a good ranking. … It’s just the payoff for such a long year. My team and I worked hard. It pays off. Just shows us that we’re doing the right way. This trophy, like right now here, these are the best feelings. Not even the ranking. Just to actually touch this and I take it home, it’s in the story, it’s in my curriculum. It’s the way of, like, ‘I did it.'”

How did it unfold?

The first set started on an even scale, with the pair exchanging early breaks before Kontaveit dropped a backhand into the net to hand Muguruza a 4-3 lead. The Spaniard then won the last four games to take a one-set lead. Kontaveit refocussed and got the early lead in the second set as Muguruza’s error tally started to rise. 

With momentum on her side, the Estonian consolidated her control of the set to build a 5-3 lead. However, the Spaniard was in no mood to give up yet. With Kontaveit serving for the set, Muguruza pulled back level at 5-5. This time, the momentum swung in favour of Muguruza, who won the final four games for the second set in a row. In the end, Muguruza broke Kontaveit at love to wrap up the victory.

Krejcikova-Siniakova win WTA Finals doubles title

No.1 seeds Barbora Krejcikova and Katerina Siniakova of the Czech Republic ended their memorable year by winning the doubles event at the Akron WTA Finals in Guadalajara. The Czechs defeated No.3 seeds Hsieh Su-wei of Chinese Taipei and Elise Mertens of Belgium, 6-3, 6-4, in an hour and 18 minutes, to clinch their maiden WTA Finals doubles championship. 

“I think it was a really good day for us,” Krejcikova said, in the post-match press conference. “I think we did everything the best way we could. I was really happy that our game style was working and that everything we said was working. I just think that we were a really good team out there today. It’s very, very special to get the trophy from Martina [Navratilova], who we look up to. She is a really big hero for us. The whole day was just amazing. I really enjoyed it. Yeah, now holidays!”

Meanwhile, Siniakova said: “This week was really good for us. I think we needed to stay aggressive, and we did it. We were really playing well. We keep the team spirit, so we were just trying, we fight. I’m just really happy that we have the trophy.”

Sportslumo Desk

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