Paula Badosa Indian Wells WTA 2021

Paula Badosa secures first semi-final slot at WTA Finals

The Indian Wells champion is the first player at the WTA Finals to claim two match wins and cement her place in the last four.

Paula Badosa began her WTA Finals debut impressively when she faced top seed Aryna Sabalenka in her opening match.

After going 4-2 down in the first set there, the Spaniard proceeded to win 10 consecutive games to take the victory 6-4, 6-0 over Sabalenka.

In her second match, Badosa took on Maria Sakkari. The Greek had herself displayed strong form to defeat Iga Swiatek 6-2, 6-4 in her first match in Mexico.

But Badosa was too strong for Sakkari, once again winning in straight sets 7-6 (7-4), 6-4.

In the second tie of the round, Sabalenka faced Swiatek and looked in trouble down a set at 6-2.

But the Belarusian fought back to win in three and end Swiatek’s hopes of the semi-finals. As a result, Badosa is assured of reaching the last four with one match to spare.

She will next take on Swiatek, who will be playing for pride as her tournament will end after the group stage.

Another Spaniard could yet advance to the semi-finals in Guadalajara. Garbine Muguruza bounced back from her defeat to Karolina Pliskova to overcome Barbora Krejcikova and stay in the competition.

Muguruza and Pliskova are the only players in Mexico who have competed at the WTA Finals before.

In three previous appearances, Muguruza’s best showing at the event came in 2015, reaching the semi-finals before losing to eventual champion Agnieszka Radwanska.

She faces Anett Kontaveit next. Any of Kontaveit, Muguruza, Pliskova or Krejcikova could yet advance fro. their group to the knockout stages.

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