Thursday, 15 November, 2018

Sloane Stephens v Karolina Pliskova — WTA Finals

Sloane Stephens 2018 WTA Finals Naomi Osaka's incredible breakthrough season ends in tears
Sergio Cook | 31 October, 2018, 12:47

"I know that I have won lots of finals, but for me every final is a big challenge", she says. "It just got worse and worse and worse, and then I just couldn't move". "I was very proud of my effort today".

From there Stephens found her footing and seventh-seeded Pliskova began to derail.

"I was thinking I'm going to lose zero and zero". It's like I'm trying so hard.

"At 6-0 2-0 you don't have anything to lose, so you can kind of do whatever at that point and hope for the best".

Heading to her biggest career final, Svitolina will seek her 13th career title and fourth this season, following the Brisbane International, Dubai Tennis Championships and Italian Open.

"I had a bit of an adrenaline dump after I finally won one game - I was really fired up, so I was like 'Okay, come on, let's do this".

Pliskova was only a point away from a 3-0 lead in the second set. "I played against top players and the best players in the world, and I played great tennis", she said.

Defeating Sloane Stephens, 3-6, 6-2, 6-2, Svitolina became the first Ukrainian to win the title.

The No. 6-seeded Svitolina captured the title in only her second appearance at the year-end finals, past year losing in the round robin portion of the championships in her debut.

"There's still lots of work ahead", said sixth-seeded Svitolina. "Definitely, Singapore is going to stay for a very long time in my mind", Svitolina said in an on-court interview. Her opponent will be known later.

Bertens only qualified for the WTA Finals just days before the tournament after world number one Simona Halep withdrew due to injury.

Bertens double-faulted on break and set point down, and she frustratingly threw her racquet down in disgust after conceding the set in that fashion. However, to win the set, she failed on a tie-break niderlandy won 7:5.

Serving for her place in the final, Svitolina saved two break points before shutting Bertens down.

Osaka has had a whirlwind time since her stunning win over Serena Williams in a controversial US Open final.

Sloane Stephens of the United States celebrates after wining against Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic during their women's singles semi final match at the WTA tennis finals in Singapore, Saturday, Oct. 27, 2018.

"And maybe not playing so well in Asia actually made me a little bit fresher, because other girls had played semi-finals, quarter-finals etc, so maybe this was a little bit of a factor as well". Elina was again stronger on the pitch and Kiki took the lead.

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