Thursday, November 11, 2021

Sakkari wins WTA Finals debut; Sabalenka upset

Maria Sakkari became the first Greek woman to play in the WTA Finals
in singles or doubles. 2019 photo by Paul Bauman
   No. 4 seed Maria Sakkari defeated No. 5 seed Iga Swiatek, last year's French Open champion, 6-2, 6-4 today in a round-robin opener in the WTA Finals in Guadalajara.
   Sakkari, the runner-up in the 2018 (inaugural) Mubadala Silicon Valley Classic in San Jose, became the first Greek woman to play in the WTA Finals in singles or doubles.
   In a doubles round-robin opener, No. 3 seeds Hsieh Su-Wei and Elise Mertens beat No. 6 seeds Alexa Guarachi and Desirae Krawczyk 7-6 (3), 6-2.
   During the night session, No. 7 seed Paula Badosa of Spain dominated No. 1 seed Aryna Sabalenka, the San Jose runner-up in 2019, 6-4, 6-0. Badosa, the Indian Wells champion last month, reeled off the last 10 games to extend her winning streak to seven matches.
   Sabalenka tested positive for COVID just before Indian Wells and said she "couldn't move for four days."
   No. 1 doubles seeds Barbora Krejcikova and Katerina Siniakova beat No. 8 seeds Giuliana Olmos, a product of Fremont in the San Francisco Bay Area, and Sharon Fichman 6-4, 6-1.
   Top-ranked Ashleigh Barty chose not to defend her 2019 title because of COVID travel and quarantine restrictions. The WTA Finals were not held last year due to the pandemic.
   ATP Tour — In the doubles quarterfinals of the Stockholm Open, an ATP 250 tournament, Santiago Gonzalez of Mexico and Andres Molteni of Argentina eliminated wild cards Andre Goransson (University of California, Berkeley, 2011-14) and Robert Lindstedt (Fresno State, 1995-97), 44, of Sweden 6-3, 6-4.
   Gonzalez and Molteni were coming off a 6-7 (5), 7-5 [10-7] victory over No. 1 seeds Ivan Dodig of Croatia and Marcelo Melo of Brazil.
   CollegeVivian Ovrootsky of San Jose, Calif., signed a National Letter of Intent to attend the University of Texas, and Alexis Blokhina of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., verbally committed to Stanford. They are ranked fourth and sixth, respectively, in the girls' class of 2022 by tennisrecruiting.net.
   Ethan Quinn of Fresno, Calif., signed to enroll at Georgia. He is the third-ranked high school boys senior at tennisrecruiting.net.

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