Stephens fights back to beat Pliskova in see-saw Singapore semifinal

31 October, 2018, 12:47 | Author: Alyssa Little
  • Kiki Bertens BNP Paribas WTA Finals Singapore presented by SC Global WTA Finals Simona Halep Karolina Pliskova Garbiñe Muguruza Elina Svitolina Caroline Wozniacki Venus Williams Jelena Ostapenko Caroline Garcia

Elina Svitolina says she has "nothing to prove" after beating Sloane Stephens to win the WTA Finals title on Sunday. A year ago we just about got a smile out of her after she beat Simona Halep in the last match and guaranteed Caroline Garcia (who came from a set and a break down to ruin the Ukrainian's chances to qualify).

Saturday's semi-finals will see Bertens take on White Group victor Elina Svitolina of Ukraine, before Stephens faces big-hitting Czech Karolina Pliskova.

Svitolina could rise three spots to world number four on the rankings after capturing her fourth title of the year.

The 24-year-old has never progressed beyond the quarter-finals of a Grand Slam but is determined to build on her Singapore conquest, which also included defeating defending champion Caroline Wozniacki. "Even when I'd lost the first eight games, they were still cheering for me".

In the second semifinal of the tournament will battle Sloane Stephens (USA) and Carolina Plskova (Czech Republic).

Pliskova was equally relentless at the start of the second set, breaking again to register an eighth game in a row before Stephens finally got on the scoreboard, roaring as if she had won the match when she broke back.

Gerrard's Rangers beaten in Scottish League Cup semis
The manager interrupted his midfielder and answered the question for him. "It's not going to be easy but we're 90 minutes away from doing it".

It was a matchup of similar styles between the athletic counterpunchers and lengthy rallies punctuated the contest.

For a place in the final, Svitolina fought Nederlandse Kiki, Bertens. She converted half of her break points, going six for 12, while she saved nine of the 12 which she encountered during the match.

Stephens' blistering forehand dictated, as she ran away with the first set.

"I think physically I was a little bit stronger. pushed myself a little bit more maybe mentally", Svitolina told reporters. So she was serving well, and I just wasn't being aggressive enough. Buoyed by the avoidance of total humiliation, Stephens appeared reborn and reeled off five of the next seven games to tie up the match as Pliskova struggled to maintain the pace. Svitolina addressed the "haters" and those who commented that she had no right to be in this line-up by emerging from the group 3-0.

She consolidated the break after a 10-minute game to lead 3-0, but Stephens won the next two games to get back on serve. Next year the tournament will be happening in the Chinese city of Shenzhen.

In the middle of the first set tennis players have exchanged breaks, then take your submission.

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