Bertens advances in Singapore after Osaka succumbs to injury

Bertens advances in Singapore after Osaka succumbs to injury

Bertens advances in Singapore after Osaka succumbs to injury

American Sloane Stephens and Kiki Bertens of The Netherlands reached the semi-finals of the Women's Tennis Association (WTA) Finals in contrasting fashion in Singapore today.

The turning point in the second set had to be a mammoth game where Stephens finally prevailed on her sixth break point. She is the first player to go through the WTA Finals undefeated since Serena Williams in 2013.

However, the second set - which lasted 48 minutes - was a different story as number six seed Svitolina finished strongly, winning three games in a row to take it 6-2 and square the match.

Svitolina booked her spot in the last four by coming from a set down to defeat defending champion Caroline Wozniacki.

"Sloane played incredible tennis so I really had to play my best tennis to win", Svitolina added.

"I came out here a little bit nervous, and I wasn't really feeling the ball", Stephens said.

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A double-fault from 26-year-old Bertens gave Svitolina the opportunity to break and another error from a wide forehand saw the Dutchwoman fall 3-1 behind but Svitolina couldn't hold serve as Bertens broke back immediately to remain in touch.

"Now I played three good matches". That's why for me it was a little bit disappointing, and I was trying to stay very positive, because I was giving everything on the practice court and results were...not what I expected.

The American felt she had not been playing badly for the first set and a half against Pliskova, but that her Czech opponent was just reading her game so brilliantly in the early stages. "In the end she was just a more stable player".

Before they met in the final, Stephens expressed sympathy for Svitolina. The Ukrainian who said she was training for the second-tier Year-End Championships in Zhuhai has done brilliantly this week as she has gone unbeaten and will face Sloane Stephens for the title tomorrow. "I want to take this win as one to go forward, and for all those people and haters that were saying I don't deserve to be here and I'm, you know, not good". The title at the WTA Finals was for Elina's fourth of the season and 13th in his career.

Sloane Stephens of United States of America reacts during the singles final against Ukraine's Elina Svitolina. Next year the tournament will be happening in the Chinese city of Shenzhen.

The triumph cemented her standing on hard court but Osaka has had limited success on clay and grass, where she is yet to make it past the third round at Wimbledon and the French Open.

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