Garbine Muguruza WTA Indian Wells 2021

Garbine Muguruza one win from clinching WTA Finals spot

With her first career win in Moscow Garbine Muguruza is just one step from qualifying for her fourth WTA Finals appearance.

The Kremlin Cup second seed overcame Czechia’s Tereza Martincova 6-4, 4-6, 6-3 to book her place in the quarter-finals of the WTA 500 event.

“I feel happy,” she began in her post-match interview. “It’s a first victory for me in Russia. It was a very difficult match. I’m happy to get [the win].

“I think I served well in the third set. I kept attacking and [playing] my game, got the break and I managed to hold it until the end.”

The Spaniard served strongly with 73% of first serves in as well as hitting 35 winners to Martincova’s 24. The victory means that Muguruza is just 55 ranking points from qualifying for the season-ending WTA Finals.

Should she win her next match in Moscow to advance to the semi-finals, she would guarantee herself a further 85 ranking points and book her spot as the fifth qualifier to the event in Guadalajara, Mexico.

Muguruza last qualified for the event in 2017, the same year she won her second Slam title, at that year’s Wimbledon. Her best result at the event came in her first appearance in 2015, reaching the semi-finals before losing to eventual champion Agnieska Radwanska.

Four women have already qualified for Guadalajara. They are Wimbledon champion Ashleigh Barty, runner-up Karolina Pliskova, Roland Garros champion Barbora Krejcikova and world number two Aryna Sabalenka.

Sabalenka will make her first WTA Finals appearance this season shoudl she choose to compete.

The Belarusian is also playing at the Kremlin Cup as the number one seed. She and Muguruza would meet in the final should they both make it there.