Sunday’s Set Points, 2016 WTA Finals Singapore: Day 1 Media Round-up

Set PointsThe first day of the 2016 WTA Finals kicked off in Singapore and it was Simona Halep and Madison Keys first up. Halep was victorious with a fourth consecutive win over Keys in 2016, 6-2 6-4.

The two hot shots of the day both came from Halep – firstly this was a stunning get to a drop shot from Keys.

Keys threatened a comeback in the second set but Halep slammed the door shut again by breaking at 4-4 with this sensational instinctive passing shot winner.

It was a solid display from Halep who served and moved well. Keys though had a tough day at the office as she failed to get enough returns in play to make this competitive. 41 unforced errors in 69 minutes…

Here is Halep’s on-court interview with Andrew Krasny.

In her press conference, Keys admitted to nerves and struggling with the return and adjusting to the court. The WTA’s Facebook account are streaming the press conferences this week so make sure to give the page HERE a follow to watch live.

 

While the first match was a damp squib, the second encounter from the red group was brilliant. Angelique Kerber edged Dominika Cibulkova, 7-6(5) 2-6 6-3 in two hours and 17 minutes of scintillating tennis.

Both players came away with positive stats in terms of winners to unforced errors. Cibulkova played such a high level in the first set, but still couldn’t win it against a determined Kerber. Surprisingly, it was Kerber who dropped her level in the second set with Cibulkova forcing a third set. The Slovak got the early break in the decider but a battling Kerber fought back to win four games in a row against a tiring Cibulkova who just couldn’t maintain her level.

Love to see this respect after such a great contest.

Kerber’s forehand down-the-line always gives me life… it’s such a dreamy shot and there were many of them to enjoy in this match.

In case you missed it, check out the highlights of the Kerber-Cibulkova match from the WTA below.

I really enjoyed listening to Alicia Molik on the TennisTV commentary… her insight was superb.

Svetlana Kuznetsova has finally arrived in Singapore.

Day 2 previews for Radwanska v Kuznetsova (19:30pm local time) and Pliskova v Muguruza are now up on the blog at the links below.

And finally, Lucie Safarova and Bethanie Mattek-Sands featured in a live video from the practice courts on the WTA’s Facebook page. Lucie confirmed that she is no longer with Rob Steckley.

 

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6 thoughts on “Sunday’s Set Points, 2016 WTA Finals Singapore: Day 1 Media Round-up

  1. One of the main reasons why I enjoy this tournament a lot is because of the very good atmosphere in the matches which is sadly lacking in a fair amount of matches in other events including some at Grand Slams. The Kerber-Cibulkova match made excellent viewing and I thought that Cibulkova was going to win at one stage in the final set but Kerber never gives up and she deserved to win and should get to the semi’s now. I’ve predicted Kerber to win this tournament but I am hoping that Aga will win it but she does seem to be in the tougher group against some big hitters which she can sometimes struggle to cope with ( does have a good record against Karolina Pliskova though ).

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    • It was a great match! I thought Cibulkova had it in that decider for a moment too but Kerber’s just so mentally strong and Cibulkova seemed to tire a little.

      It is a tough group for Aga, but I do think she’ll make it to the semi-finals at the least. I haven’t even bothered with looking past the semis with this tournament!

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  2. Thanks for your review, James! Couldn’t watch the first match but from what I read I didn’t miss a lot? I only started watching Angie vs Domi from Set No.2 0:3* but it was (still) a really tense contest. I loved that both came to play and fought hard. Proud of Angie but also very good spirits from Cibulkova. Tbh I see her winning against Keys on Tuesday.

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    • My pleasure, Murphy!

      No you didn’t miss much haha! The second match was gripping and I thought Cibulkova did really well in her first match. I’d probably still go for Keys over Cibulkova, I think she’ll improve significantly in her next match.

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      • I agree, there is also the match up issue involved with Madison. Fine, she was nervous, her first wta finals + her fourth try to beat Simona and it did not go as planned. This does not mean that Madison won´t improve or won´t be better in the other matches.

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      • @mixedcuentos: Didn’t imply that. just was impressed by Cibulkova and I really think she will perform better than Keys in her first WTAfinals.

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