Garbine Muguruza captured her third and biggest title of the year as she won the end-of-the-year WTA Finals with a 6-3, 7-5 win over Estonia’s Anett Kontaveit in Guadalajara, Mexico on Wednesday night.
In doing so, Muguruza becomes the first Spanish woman to ever win the event.
“Right now I feel extremely happy and relieved because it’s a tournament that I’ve struggled at the beginning, then I managed to play well,” said Muguruza. “I think I’m staying composed a little bit now because it means really a lot to me win such a big, big tournament, the [WTA Finals], in Latin America, here in Mexico. I think it’s just perfect.”
After the two players traded break early, Muguruza secured the key break for a 4-3 lead in the opening set, who then held and broke once more to take the first.
It looked as if we would head to a deciding third set to determine the winner of this match as Kontaveit built a 5-3 advantage in the second set. But Muguruza would rattle off the next four games to win the set and capture the title.
“I'm just very happy I proved to myself once again I can be the best, I can be the maestra, like how we say in Spanish. That puts me in a very good position for next year, a good ranking....It's just the payoff for such a long year. My team and I worked hard. It pays off. Just shows us that we're doing the right way,” added Muguruza, who finishes the season ranked third in the world. “This trophy, like right now, right here, these are the best feelings. Not even the ranking. Just to actually touch this and I take it home, it's in the story, it's in my curriculum. It's the way of, like, ‘I did it.’”
The loss for Kontaveit puts a sour note on a fantastic year by the 25-year-old Estonian. But she says she is only taking the positives away from her season, one that saw her win 29 of her last 34 matches to finish the year with a career-high ranking of seventh in the world.
“A tough match today, but definitely a really positive season, Kontaveit said after her 6-3, 7-5 loss to Garbiñe Muguruza in the final, “I was just so happy to qualify here and to make it to the finals. It feels incredible. Very proud of what I've achieved in the second half of the season.”
In the doubles final, Barbora Krejcikova & Katerina Siniakova, the top-seeded duo from the Czech Republic, defeated Chinese Taipei’s Hseih Su-wei & Belgium’s Elise Mertens 6-3, 6-4 to win the year-end title.
“This week was really good for us,” said Siniakova. “I think we needed to stay aggressive, and we did it. We were really playing well. We keep the team spirit, so we were just trying, we fight. I’m just really happy that we have the trophy.”