WTA Finals play-off Maria Sakkari Veronika Kudermetova

‘It was meant to be’ – Maria Sakkari and Veronika Kudermetova in play-off for WTA Finals spot

Maria Sakkari and Veronika Kudermetova will do battle in the Guadalajara quarter-finals for the last spot in the WTA Finals. 

Sakkari defeated Australian Open finalist Danielle Collins from behind 5-7, 6-3, 6-3 to end the American’s hopes of qualifying for Fort Worth. Meanwhile Russia’s Kudermetova defeated Jelena Ostapenko 6-4, 6-4 to put the Latvian out of the running.

“It was meant to be,” Sakkari said of facing Kudermetova. “We both had very tough draws. It was not guaranteed that we were going to play each other in the quarter-finals.

“I think the passion, how much we want it, it got us to the point that we have to play each other just to get that one spot. It’s going to come down to not who wants it more, but who plays a better match tomorrow.”

Entering Guadalajara, 17 players were still in contention for five WTA Finals spots. Coco Gauff and Caroline Garcia then booked their places, leaving three remaining. Aryna Sabalenka and Daria Kasatkina have both qualified despite losing before the quarter-finals in Mexico.

Sakkarai is yet to claim a second career title after not claiming a trophy yet this season. She reached two tour finals at Indian Wells and Parma, losing to Iga Swiatek and Maya Sherif respectively.



Should Sakkari qualify for the WTA Finals it would be her second appearance there after competing last year. If Kudermetova makes it she will make her event debut in singles. She has already booke dher spot there in doubles alongside Elise Mertens.

“We both have good seasons,” Sakkari added. “That’s why we’re fighting for that spot. I don’t care what people say about my season that has been a roller coaster.

“But all I know is I’m still a top 10 player. I’m still one of the two players that might get the last spot.”

Sakkari leads the duo’s head-to-head 2-1, including a win in their most recent meeting in the third round of the Australian Open in January.

? Free >> Join our legendary newsletter

Join >> Receive $700/£600 of tennis gear from the Tennishead CLUB

? Social >> Facebook, Twitter, Instagram & YouTube

? Read >> World’s best tennis magazine

? Watch >> How to enjoy ATP/WTA/Slam tennis on TV

? Shop >> Lowest price tennis gear from our trusted partner