Muguruza beat Kontaveit in two sets to win the WTA Finals title
Guadalajara Garbiñe Muguruza’s trip to Mexico began last week drinking tequila. After winning the WTA Finals on Wednesday, it will end the same way.
The 28-year-old Spaniard beat Anett Kontaveit 6-3 7-5 to win the WTA Finals title for the first time in her career and improve her playing record in Mexico to 14 wins and two losses.
Before the tournament began, Muguruza drove 37 miles (60 kilometers) to Tequila, the small town outside Guadalajara where the folk spirit is produced.
“I went into town, and got a taste. I knew, I knew. We (now) are going to have some tequila, have fun, and lose all the tension we go through and carry around,” said Muguruza. I think the whole team deserves it.”
Muguruza, who won back-to-back titles in Monterrey, northern Mexico, in 2018 and 2019, became the first Spanish player to win the women’s season-ending championship.
Arantxa Sanchez-Vicario has been a runner-up twice, the last time in 1993.
Her previous successes in Mexico prompted Muguruza to play in the finals. At the party after winning the title, she remembered telling Steve Simon, CEO of the WTA, at the US Open, that she wanted to play again south of the Rio Grande.
“To qualify, I’ve been telling them all year with my team, that in Mexico, we have to make it, come on. That was my biggest motivation,” Muguruza said.
Former number 1 Muguruza, who was a semi-finalist of the 2015 WTA Finals, also became the biggest champion since Serena Williams won her in 2014 and will finish the season third in the rankings, her best performance since 2017. .
Muguruza was supported all week by a boisterous crowd that gathered at Estadio Akron to cheer and applaud her as if she was one of them.
“It’s funny, the other day I was talking to my manager, Oliver. He was like, you know, for the first time, Garbiñe, you really use the crowd, and you really get that energy and you use it on the field,” said Muguruza, who entered Akron Stadium wearing a T-shirt. Mexico football team in its last two games, you should be doing it a lot.”
“I think the big lesson for me is that I have to get the energy from the environment. I’m very subsidized here in Mexico. I don’t know if it’s going to be everywhere, but I’ve used it this week for sure.”
Despite the loss, Kontaveit, who has moved from 30th in the world rankings to the top 10 in the past few months, is expected to take seventh place in the rankings.
The 25-year-old Estonian has finished the season with a record 29-4 in her last 33 matches, including her title in Ostrava. Prior to this stretch she had a 19-13 record of the year.
Muguruza took control early in the game with three breaks against the irregular Kontaveit, who played better in the second and got a break in the ninth, but the Spaniard broke the following Estonians to win it.
Earlier, Barbora Krejsikova, Katerina Siniakova defeated Hsi Su Wei and Elise Mertens 6-3, 6-4 to win the WTA doubles title unbeaten.
Krijsikova and Sinyakova won titles at Roland Garros and Madrid, and gold at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
“I think we need to stay aggressive, and we did,” said Sinyakova, who finished No. 1 in the doubles rankings. “I’m really happy we got the trophy.”
The WTA Finals were only held in Guadalajara this year, and the event is scheduled to return in 2022 to Shenzhen, China.
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