Garbine Muguruza wins ‘everything or nothing’ match to set up ‘historical’ clash against Paula Badosa
She started the 2021 WTA Finals on a losing note, but Garbine Muguruza is into the semi-finals after coming out on top of her must-win clash against the in-form Anett Kontaveit.
Former world No 1 Muguruza lost her opening group match against Karolina Pliskova and followed it up with a come-from-behind win over Barbora Krejcikova, leaving her with a winner-takes all encounter Kontaveit.
The Estonian came into the match on the back of 12 consecutive wins, but Muguruza emerged with a 6-4, 6-4 victory to qualify for the last four.
Lighting up the night ✨
— wta (@WTA) November 15, 2021
The two-time Grand Slam winner broke in the opening game of the match and repeated the trick in the second set.
“Today was a match that was kind of everything or nothing,” Muguruza said. “Starting the round-robin with a loss, it was never good. To finally get two wins and qualify was amazing.”
It means Spain is assured of a player in the final of the season-ending tournament for the first time since 1993 as Muguruza will take on compatriot Paula Badosa in the semi-final.
Arantxa Sanchez Vicario was the last Spaniard to play in the final when she finished runner-up 28 years ago.
“This is amazing. I didn’t know all of this history,” Muguruza said. “1993, I was born that year.
“It’s amazing there are four players left and two of them are Spaniards. I mean, that just shows that Spain has a great level of tennis and a great school. It’s going to be a fun match. It’s like you said, historical. Hopefully the crowd is going to be on the match. Whoever plays better is going to get the final.”
In the other game in Group Teotihuacán, Pliskova overcame a nightmare start to beat fellow Czech Krejcikova, winning 0-6, 6-4, 6-4.
— wta (@WTA) November 14, 2021
“The first game was super long and I somehow lost my focus and of course I was a bit nervous to play a Czech woman,” Pliskova said.
“It wasn’t easy at all, at some point I thought it is almost over in the second when she broke me to go up 4-2. I am proud that I kind of stayed there and fought for it.”
Both players will be heading home as Kontaveit will join Muguruza in the semi-final.
Russian dream team on course for Davis Cup win as Medvedev and Rublev march on
Medvedev and Rublev secured victory for the Russian Tennis Federation over Germany.
Daniil Medvedev reveals players wouldn’t be ‘comfortable’ competing in China
China are still in hot water…
Emma Raducanu among the biggest movers in the 2021 tennis rankings
There is no stopping the British No 1.
Rafael Nadal has accepted Novak Djokovic will win the most Grand Slams
The Spanish player has conceded to the world No 1.
Novak Djokovic’s Serbia fail to progress to the final of the Davis Cup
Serbia lose out while Croatia progress.
Why Andy Murray should take heart from his near misses in 2021
Murray’s end of year ranking of No.134 highlights how far he has to climb to get back to the top.
Nick Kyrgios on his ‘uncomfortable’ experience with Serena Williams and dealing with critics
Kyrgios was in a feisty mood as he spoke to the No Boundaries podcast.
Daniil Medvedev in fine form as Russian Federation storm into Davis Cup semi-final
Daniil Medvedev and Andrey Rublev secured victory for the Russian Tennis Federation over Sweden.
Olympic chiefs speak to Peng Shuai after WTA pulls all events out of China
The IOC said it is concerned about Peng but is using “quiet diplomacy” to engage with China.
Explainer – Why Emma Raducanu has a real chance to break into the world’s top 10 in 2022
The door is open for Raducanu to make rapid strides forward in the WTA rankings.