Radwanska advances to semifinals at WTA Finals
Defending champion Agnieszka Radwanska took the final spot in the semifinals of the WTA Finals, beating Karolina Pliskova 7-5, 6-3 yesterday.
Radwanska, who finished 2-1 in the round robin, will play topseeded Angelique Kerber in Saturday’s semifinals.
Kerber won the Australian Open and the U.S. Open this season, and reached the Wimbledon final.
“I think I really have nothing to lose at the moment, especially (since) I’m going to play the best player of the season,” Radwanska said of the top-ranked German. “She’s played incredible tennis this year.”
Earlier, Svetlana Kuznetsova earned first place in the White Group despite losing to Garbine Muguruza 3-6, 6-0, 6-1.
Kuznetsova will next play Dominika Cibulkova, who reached the semifinals despite finishing 12. Pliskova offered Radwanska too many free points, making 29 unforced errors to only eight for the Pole.
Radwanska initially trailed 4-2 in the first set, but she soon recovered to 4-4.
“I just really play my best tennis against her,” Radwanska said. “I can really play my game and do my things, things that I want to do on court and have a good rhythm.”
In the second set, Radwanska scored the final service break in the eighth game when Pliskova netted two consecutive overheads.
Kuznetsova managed to win the first set against Muguruza, but looked fatigued after that.
“Definitely, you don’t want to lose the match,” said Kuznetsova, the last player to qualify for the season-ending tournament. “You try to fight. Sometimes the lack of energy just won’t let you do that.”
Former champ Tsonga, Karlovic advance to Vienna semifinals
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga defeated Albert Ramos-Vinolas of Spain 6-2, 7-6 (5) yesterday to set up a semifinal against Croatia’s Ivo Karlovic at the Erste Bank Open.
It will be the third semifinal appearance of the season for the 15th-ranked Frenchman, who lost the previous two, in Auckland and Monte Carlo.
Sixth-seeded Tsonga, who won the event in 2011, failed to score a point while serving at 5-1 but broke again to close out the first set, and converted his third match point in the second-set tiebreaker.
Earlier, the 21st-ranked Karlovic used one of his 29 aces to save a match point before beating Karen Khachanov of Russia 6-7 (5), 7-6 (5), 6-3.
Karlovic, who won titles in Newport and Los Cabos, advanced to his sixth semifinal of the season.
Gael Monfils pulls out of Paris Masters with rib injury
Frenchman Gael Monfils has pulled out of next week’s Paris Masters because of a rib injury.
The eighth-ranked Monfils, a US Open semifinalist this year, has already qualified for the seasonending ATP finals in London next month.
He is making his first appearance at the finals.
Tournament organisers said Friday that Spaniard Marcel Granollers has also pulled out of the Paris Masters, without giving a reason.
They will be replaced in the main draw by Ukrainian Illya Marchenko and Argentine Guido Pella.