Keys 1st Amer­i­can in WTA Fi­nals since Wil­liams sis­ters

Malta Independent - - SPORT -

Madi­son Keys is the first Amer­i­can other than Ser­ena and Venus Wil­liams to earn a berth at the year-end WTA Fi­nals in more than a decade.

The last Amer­i­can out­side of a Wil­liams at the fi­nals was Lind­say Daven­port, a for­mer coach to Keys, in 2005.

Keys' de­but in the WTA Fi­nals, start­ing to­day, came cour­tesy of her win­ning a sec­ond ca­reer ti­tle in Birm­ing­ham, Eng­land, and reach­ing fi­nals at Rome and Montreal.

She also played in the Olympic semi­fi­nals, los­ing to Pe­tra Kvi­tova for the bronze medal.

"Be­ing here is a huge ac­com­plish­ment for me," Keys said. "I def­i­nitely want to ... prove that I've worked re­ally hard to get here, and I'm here for a rea­son."

Keys, who climbed into the top10 rank­ings at No. 7 this month, is also the first Amer­i­can to de­but in the top 10 since Ser­ena Wil­liams in 1999.

Sec­ond-ranked Ser­ena Wil­liams pulled out of the fi­nals for the sec­ond con­sec­u­tive year. She won the ti­tle in 2014, the first year the event moved to Sin­ga­pore. Wil­liams hasn't played since a U.S. Open semi­fi­nal loss to

Yes­ter­day’s re­sults

Foot­ball Bank of Val­letta Premier League Gzira U.-Birkirkara 1-7; Val­let­taTarx­ien R. 1-0; Balzan-Ham­run S. 3-1; Mosta-Flo­ri­ana 0-1 Malta FA Tro­phy sec­ond round At­tard-Vit­to­riosa S. 1-5; Ra­bat AjaxSirens 1-2; Qrendi-Ora­tory Y. 2-1; Mgarr U.-Zab­bar SP 2-1; Swieqi U.Gudja U. 3-2; St Ge­orge’s-Sig­giewi 2-3; Ghaxaq-Nadur Y. 0-4; Kirkop-Pi­eta H. 0-1 GFA sec­ond divi­sion KO Gharb R.-Zeb­bug R. 2-4

To­day’s fix­tures

Foot­ball Vic­tor Tedesco Sta­dium: Bank of Val­letta Premier League 3pm Pem­broke Ath.-Sliema W.; 5.15pm Hiber­ni­ans-St An­drews Cen­te­nary Sta­dium: Malta FA Tro­phy sec­ond round 3pm Melita-SK Vic­to­ria W.; 5.15pm Qormi-Xewk­ija T. Charles Abela Sta­dium: Malta FA Tro­phy sec­ond round 3pm Lija Ath.-St Lawrence S.; 5.15pm Msida SJMqabba Gozo Sta­dium: Malta FA Tro­phy sec­ond round 3pm Kercem AjaxMarsa; 5pm Vic­to­ria H.-Ze­j­tun C. Sirens Sta­dium: Malta FA Tro­phy sec­ond round 3pm Sen­glea-Xaghra U. 5.15pm Naxxar L.-Gha­jn­sielem Kercem Ground: Bank of Val­letta women’s first divi­sion 11am Go­zoKirkop Kirkop Ground: Women’s U-17 league 9am Birkirkara-Zeb­bug R.; 10.30am Karolina Pliskova, and cited a per­sis­tent right shoul­der in­jury.

Keys will face Si­mona Halep in her first of three round-robin matches on Sun­day. They are in the Red Group along with world No. 1 An­gelique Ker­ber and Do­minika Cibulkova.

The White Group con­sists of de­fend­ing cham­pion Ag­nieszka Rad­wan­ska, French Open cham­pion Gar­bine Mugu­ruza, U.S. Open fi­nal­ist Pliskova, and Svet­lana Kuznetsova.

Kuznetsova, a two-time Grand Slam sin­gles win­ner, won the Krem­lin Cup in Moscow on Satur­day to take the last spot, and qual­ify for her first fi­nals since 2009.

Ker­ber over­took Wil­liams for the No. 1 rank­ing af­ter she won the U.S. Open last month, her sec­ond ca­reer Grand Slam ti­tle. In Jan­uary, Ker­ber upset Wil­liams in the Aus­tralian Open fi­nal.

Ker­ber, the first Ger­man woman since St­effi Graf to at­tain the top rank­ing, also won the Olympic sil­ver medal in Rio.

Rad­wan­ska ar­rived in Sin­ga­pore to de­fend her ti­tle af­ter win­ning three tour­na­ments this year — Shen­zhen, New Haven, and Beijing. Ghaxaq-Fgura 1-1; Zab­bar-Sliema 41; Zeb­bug-At­tard 1-0; San Gwann-Val­letta 6-0 Un­der-17 Ze­j­tun-Fgura 0-1; Ghaxaq-Birzeb­buga 0-2; Xgha­jra-Sirens 1-1; Ra­batLija/Ik­lin 3-5; Gzira-Mtarfa 2-0 Bas­ket­ball Bank of Val­letta Men Divi­sion Two Star­lites-Gzira Ath­leta 44-73; Sig­giewi St Ni­cholas-Mar­vels Power Plus 46-53 Raiders (Luxol)-Fgura U.; 12.00 Ham­run S.-Mosta. St Lu­cia Ground: IASC League One 8.30am Flo­ri­ana A.-Ham­run L.; 9.45am Ze­j­tun RS-Mosta G.; 11am Msida RSSen­glea Y. Bas­ket­ball Ta’ Qali: St James Hos­pi­tal Women 11.15am Caffe MOAK-Depiro; 2.45pm Gzira Ath­leta-Star­lites; Shield Men 1pm Cyn­ergi Depiro-Star­lites; 4.30pm Gzira Ath­leta-Flo­ri­ana MCP Car Parks Hockey Cor­radino: HAM Chal­lenge Cup Group A 9am Flo­ri­ana YS-Light­shop Hs; 11am Poiatti QHC-Lafterla WH Handball Univer­sity Sports Hall: MHA Cup women 12.45pm Swieqi Times Gone By Phoenix-Luxol Shoot­ing Bid­nija: 10am Trap com­pe­ti­tion for the Gaba Di­a­monds Tro­phy

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