Top-seeded Kerber toils in win vs Cibulkova at WTA Finals
Top-seeded Angelique Kerber struggled to defeat seventhseeded Dominika Cibulkova 7-6 (5), 2-6, 6-3 on the opening day of the WTA Finals in Singapore on Sunday.
Kerber, who secured the top ranking last month, battled Cibulkova for 2 hours, 17 minutes before the Slovakian finally succumbed.
“It was a really good match from both of us, especially the first set,” Kerber said. “It’s a good start to the tournament like this, where you knew you had to play your best to win.”
Earlier on Sunday, third-seeded Simona Halep won the first match of the round-robin portion of the tournament by taking a 6-2, 6-4 decision over sixth-seeded American Madison Keys.
In Red Group action, Kerber and Halep stand at 1-0, while Keys and Cibulkova are at 0-1.
Today, Kerber will play Halep, while Cibulkova and Keys, both making their WTA Finals debut, will play each other.
Kerber posted 29 winners and 32 unforced errors to 36 winners and 34 unforced errors for Cibulkova.
It’s been a stellar season for Kerber, who won her first two Grand Slam titles at the Australian and US Opens, and also brought home the Olympic silver medal from Rio.