Gar­cia clinches fi­nal WTA spot as Konta with­draws

The New Paper - - SPORTS -

French­woman Caro­line Gar­cia se­cured the eighth and fi­nal spot for the sea­son-end­ing WTA Fi­nals in Sin­ga­pore af­ter Bri­tain’s Jo­hanna Konta with­drew from the Krem­lin Cup in Moscow due to a foot in­jury, the WTA said yes­ter­day.

Gar­cia, 23, won back-to­back ti­tles in Wuhan and Bei­jing, beat­ing Si­mona Halep in the fi­nal of the lat­ter to leapfrog Konta in the Race to Sin­ga­pore rank­ings at the start of the month, but pulled out from the on­go­ing Tian­jin Open with an in­jury.

Her with­drawal gave Konta an out­side chance of qual­i­fy­ing for the Oct 22-29 event, al­though she would have had to reach the fi­nal of the Moscow tour­na­ment to over­take Gar­cia.

“Qual­i­fy­ing for the WTA Fi­nals in Sin­ga­pore means the world to me,” Gar­cia, who will be mak­ing her first-ever sin­gles ap­pear­ance at the event, told the WTA web­site.

“I’m very proud to be among the top eight play­ers of the sea­son and I’m look­ing for­ward to be­ing part of that in­cred­i­ble field.”

World No. 4 Elina Svi­tolina, who is among the eight play­ers bound for Sin­ga­pore, has with­drawn from the Hong Kong Open due to in­jury.

The 23-year-old Ukrainian has been car­ry­ing a right groin strain which was heav­ily strapped as she laboured to a first-round vic­tory over Kaza­khstan’s Za­rina Diyas on Tues­day.

Mean­while, Maria Shara­pova over­pow­ered Poland’s Magda Linette to en­ter the quar­ter-fi­nals of the Tian­jin Open yes­ter­day and is tar­get­ing a first ti­tle since re­turn­ing from a 15-month dop­ing ban.

The for­mer world No. 1 pre­vailed 7-5, 6-3 and will make her first quar­ter-fi­nal ap­pear­ance since April’s Stuttgart Open, where she lost to Kristina Mlade­n­ovic in the semi-fi­nals.

FI­NAL FIELD FOR WTA FI­NALS

Gar­bine Mugu­ruza (Spain) Si­mona Halep (Ro­ma­nia) Karolina Pliskova (Czech Rep) Elina Svi­tolina (Ukraine)

Venus Wil­liams (US)

Caro­line Woz­ni­acki (Den­mark) Je­lena Ostapenko (Latvia) Caro­line Gar­cia (France).

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