WTA Beijing 2015, that’s a wrap: Muguruza wins biggest title of her career

Muguruza and BacsinszkyThe fourth and final Premier Mandatory tournament of 2015 concluded on Sunday with Garbiñe Muguruza winning her biggest career title to date, coming from a break down in both sets to beat Timea Bacsinszky, 7-5 6-4. When I was looking at the title stats yesterday prior to the final, it slipped my mind that Muguruza had previously only ever won ONE WTA title in Hobart. Beijing is a big deal for the Spaniard and after a disappointing US hard court season, she has rebounded superbly in Asia as the form player. The final was reasonable in terms of quality; the first set was a little scrappy but things picked up in the second set.

Bacsinszky was the more stable player early on and quickly went up 5-2. Muguruza was struggling for pace on the serve, perhaps linked to the strapping on her leg, and dropped her first three service games. Stepping up to serve for the first set, Bacsinszky played a poor game. Muguruza got a couple of deep returns in and Bacsinszky’s forehand began to leak errors. Muguruza fought back, playing much steadier herself, to win five consecutive games and take the opening set, 7-5.

Bacsinszky didn’t handle leads at all well in this match as she lost an early break in the first set. The pair played their best tennis in middle of the second set with both looking commanding on serve after a break-happy first set. Bacsinszky though, crumbled a little at 4-4 30-30, throwing in a double fault and unforced error to give Muguruza the opportunity to serve for the title. Muguruza, who has looked wobbly at times serving out sets and matches, faced few problems this time round with Bacsinszky unable to conjure up much resistance.

I feel this match-up favours Muguruza and this match was slightly reminiscent of their last encounter at Wimbledon. Bacsinszky had the edge in the first set at SW19 but couldn’t take advantage of her openings with Muguruza winning the big points. The same kind of happened in Beijing with Bacsinszky stuttering when she tried to serve out the first set.

For Bacsinszky, this has still been a fabulous week and she will now crack the world’s top ten. The Swiss player had been on a barren run of form during the summer but she turned it around in style. It’s always favourable to end the year on a high! Her speech was lovely as she spoke about how she considered retirement a few years ago and how her coach has helped her immensely. It’s such a great story and I love Timea’s warm personality. She couldn’t stop talking in the trophy ceremony!

Bacsinszky

Muguruza is in the draw for Hong Kong next week but SURELY she will pull out! She’s qualified for Singapore, which is just two weeks away. Muguruza is also just one point off Maria Sharapova in the rankings.

I find Muguruza’s top four ranking astonishing because she hasn’t had a consistent year with spells of poor form between Dubai and the French Open, and then Wimbledon and Wuhan. However she’s peaked at the tournaments that really matter. Although next year will be tough to back it all up, I think she can do it. Bacsinszky reportedly tried to get a wildcard for Linz but was refused. This ends her plight for Singapore but she will no doubt qualify for Zhuhai the week after. I’m fascinated to see whether the players who qualify for Zhuhai will actually play it because it has the potential to be a captivating tournament if the players commit to the event. I have a fear though there will be many withdrawals and retirements…

Screencaps in this post from TennisTV coverage

7 thoughts on “WTA Beijing 2015, that’s a wrap: Muguruza wins biggest title of her career

  1. Agree with your view on Zhuhai. Plus, it makes the WTA Finals less exclusive. In my opinion, the incentive to qualify for WTA Finals is lesser now compared to previous years since there’s a second option = Elite Trophy. WTA should just stick to Tournament of Champions and relocate it Zhuhai maybe since it reloactes every 3 years.

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  2. I’d have been happy with either of them winning, but Muguruza especially has played wonderful tennis this week. Her game is just enormous and yet very simple at the same time. She could well be the one to watch next year, along with Bencic and (of course) Serena.

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  3. James I read an article from AP,Garbine has pulled out of Hong Kong,with an ankle problem.
    I felt especially in the first set,with the strapping on her leg,she could not push off when serving,hence the loss of her serve,Timea indeed was the steadier player,though to Garbine’s credit,she can back from being down 2-5.I felt in the 2nd set,Timea’s bhand went off a bit,still a wonderful tournament for Timea.Well done to Garbine!.Hopefully she can be fit for Singapore,where I feel she can be a contender for the title.

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  4. Very happy for Garbi. We had seen what a huge potential she has, and now finally she is starting to get the big titles. What was particularly interesting to see this week—when fatigue and small injuries prevented her from displaying her full big-hitting range—was that she actually possesses quite a bit of variety. She can defend with slices, high balls, lobs (she even dropshot-lobbed Aga!), she is willing to come to the net whenever there’s an opportunity (even though her volleys need work, particularly on the BH side).
    Garbine is not a one-trick pony, and with the right guidance (looks like Sumyk may very well be it) she can become a complete player.

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    • I agree, Iulian. Muguruza does have many facets to her game as opposed to just the heavy hitting. I’m particularly taken by how she always close into the net to close points and she did that so well at Wimbledon. I’m excited to see what she can do in Singapore and into next year.

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  5. Got a little confused as to the pronunciation of Timea Bacsinszky’s name from differing radio and tv commentaries.
    Is it Ti -mea as in Tina or is it more like Tay -mee – ah . Amazing isn’t it. I heard both during the finals and thought I might have been saying it all wrong.

    Garbine can play with some variety( she is after all, a spanish player) however I still believe her default style is baseline tennis and she will more often than not rivert to that style of play unless backed into a difficult situation( or tactically the only wise option). But, I think it really bodes well for her longevity in the game especially in the latter years. This is something I wish Ana had developed as an escape plan, but alas, I feel she has left it too late. Personally, Garbine’s rise or fall will depend on her mental attitude, her game (although not perfect) just needs some fine tuning. It’s how she handles the pressures of the tour and being the one to beat that will become crucial. Timea plays from the heart with hope and glory, Garbine is more physical, for guts and glory … excellent win from Garbine. Better luck to Timea next time.

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