Tennis

Rookies ready to rock

Creme de la creme: The WTA tour finalists in Singapore.

Creme de la creme: The WTA tour finalists in Singapore.   | Photo Credit: Getty Images

Action begins today at the elite eight-woman event

All three debutants at the WTA Finals will be hoping to continue their stellar campaigns for at least another week by making a positive impact at the season-ending elite eight-woman event.

The trio of newcomers is Ukraine’s Elina Svitolina, who won five WTA Tour events in 2017, Latvia’s French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko, and Frenchwoman Caroline Garcia, who snared back-to-back tournaments in China to seal the final berth.

Svitolina’s appearance will feel like her graduation after playing in the last two WTA Elite Trophy tournaments in Zhuhai, China — a 12-woman event for those who did not qualify for Singapore — where she reached the final last year. “All my career has been step by step, and, you know, it was quite a good thing to play in Zhuhai, something like preparing you to be here. I made a semifinal, then final last year, so I think it can help me,” she said on Saturday.

Stunning success

Ostapenko’s stunning success at Roland Garros was the first title of her professional career and after following it up with a second tournament win in Seoul last month, the 20-year-old plans to continue her big-hitting tactics in Singapore.

“The French Open was a great tournament for me. I was always aggressive and trying to hit the ball hard if I have a chance, and I think there, especially the court and everything, it suited me. So I had a great result,” she said.

“Of course it's going to be interesting (here), but the good thing is that I played against all the players in my group, so I kind of know how they play, and I’m going to try to give my best.”

Garcia may have been the last player to qualify for Singapore following tournament triumphs in Wuhan and Beijing, but the Frenchwoman will hope to continue enjoying success with the same formula that has led to an 11-match winning run.

Svitolina and Garcia have been drawn together in the Red Group and open their campaigns with respective round-robin matches against Denmark’s Caroline Wozniacki and Romanian World No. 1 Simona Halep on Monday. Ostapenko is in the White Group alongside fellow big-hitters Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic, American Venus Williams and Spanish World No. 2 Garbine Muguruza, who she faces in her opening match on Sunday.

The groups: Red: Elina Svitolina, Caroline Garcia, Caroline Wozniacki and Simona Halep.

White: Jelena Ostapenko, Karolina Pliskova, Venus Williams and Garbine Muguruza.

A letter from the Editor


Dear reader,

We have been keeping you up-to-date with information on the developments in India and the world that have a bearing on our health and wellbeing, our lives and livelihoods, during these difficult times. To enable wide dissemination of news that is in public interest, we have increased the number of articles that can be read free, and extended free trial periods. However, we have a request for those who can afford to subscribe: please do. As we fight disinformation and misinformation, and keep apace with the happenings, we need to commit greater resources to news gathering operations. We promise to deliver quality journalism that stays away from vested interest and political propaganda.

Support Quality Journalism
Recommended for you
This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

Printable version | May 30, 2020 3:34:36 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/tennis/rookies-ready-to-rock/article19897774.ece

Next Story