Halep Cruises Over Keys, Faces Kvitova In Wuhan SFs; Cibulkova Wins 2, Will Meet Kuznetsova
by Staff | September 29th, 2016, 5:38 pm

Simona Halep clinched a spot in the year-end Singapore event after cruising past American Madison Keys 6-4, 6-2 to reach the Wuhan semifinals.

“It means a lot to qualify for the WTA Finals Singapore – it was one of my goals this year,” said Halep. “It will be my third time in a row competing at the WTA Finals and I hope I play great. I have great memories from 2014 and am confident I can do well. I will be very focused.”

Halep has now won four straight over Keys and was never in trouble in the match.

“It was a great match for me,” Halep said. “I played really well; I knew she would be very tough because she’s strong and serves really well. But I was moving well and I enjoyed my time on court.”

In the semis, Halep will face 2-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova. The Czech Kvitova blew past British No. 1 Johanna Konta 6-3, 6-4.

“I served better than yesterday and that helped me a lot. I mean, without a serve it’s almost impossible to win a match, especially as it was only one break in each set,” Kvitova said. “It was difficult mentally as well to come back from yesterday – I definitely don’t feel 100% yet.”

Halep beat Kvitova earlier in the year in Fed Cup.

“We haven’t played for a while. I saw the score and she played great today, but it’s a new day and I will do everything possible, try my best,” Kvitova added. “I lost to her last time so I have something to work on for tomorrow. I know how well she’s playing so I need to be ready.”

In the other semifinal, Svetlana Kuznetsova will battle Dominika Cibulkova.

Kuznetsova, who ousted defending champion Venus Williams earlier in the week, overcame a bad first set and a match point to deny Agnieszka Radwanska 1-6, 7-6(9), 6-4.

“I was getting better as the match was going on. Aga played well in the first set, but I wasn’t moving so well,” said Kuznetsova. “In the second set I wasn’t playing my best game. But I was trying to stay in there, trying to fight, trying to be smart and turn things around.

“Then I served good in the third set and took control of the game. I don’t know how many match points I saved, I was just trying to play normal points as it was very even. I had some set points, so I was just trying to stay calm.”

Kuznetsova was down 2-0 in the final set before winning five of the last six games.

Due to rain on Wednesday, Dominika Cibulkova had to win two matches and she did just that, beating US Open finalist Karolina Pliskova and then in the quarters she went three sets to defeat Barbora Strycova 6-3, 3-6, 6-4.

“Today was an extremely tough day,” Cibulkova said. “I would say, one of the toughest situations of this year. It gives me great confidence, that I was able to play and have energy.”

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15 Comments for Halep Cruises Over Keys, Faces Kvitova In Wuhan SFs; Cibulkova Wins 2, Will Meet Kuznetsova

jalep Says:

Sorry, I posted Kvitova v Kerber on the Stanimal’s thread.

Here’s Simona 💪 outhitting Madison Keys in the QF

Can’t decide which SF match will be better. All four players have been so strong in Wuhan this week.

Halep vs Kvitova
Kuznetsova vs Cibulkova

Tashkent sounds forgettable but a big chance for these last four.
Kozlova vs Kristyna Pliskova
Hibino vs Allertova

Excited to see the Beijing draw!

Margot Says:

Jalep did you say you were doing a challenge for Beijing? Looks as if Petra is on a roll, just knocked out Konta.

jalep Says:

My God, I woke up in the middle of the night to check scores and this Cibby v Sveta match is insane!

Margot, and I just checked on the Beijing bracket because it wasn’t ready for picking earlier last night. I’m very excited about Beijing but the Chinese scheduling I think makes it nearly impossible to keep up and have the brackets ready: Seoul- Tokyo – Guangzhou – Wuhan – Beijing – boom! Beijing had players scheduled to play the qualies when they were still in Wuhan playing doubles! Crazy people.

here’s the link but have to check back on it because it wouldn’t let me pick/edit yet. The window isn’t open yet but at least they have the main draw up. there’s hope:

But I cant go back to sleep. This match is too good. And I think Halep/Kvitova coming on next is going to be better, seriously.

jalep Says:

Lief Shiras, the stunned and amazed TC commentator just exclaimed, 50 winners! I think he meant Cibby lol but Sveta might have had that many. They were all in. Race to wherever dangling and on the line.

jalep Says:

Between Wuhan SF’s, Tennis channel is broadcasting wherever the heck this Tipsarevic match is going on and heads-up: haven’t see Tipsa play this well since 2013, maybe?

Beijing ATP and Tokyo brackets open Oct 1. per the link I posted.

jalep Says:


it’s a success finally. Bracket open for picking with 18 hours left. no problem.

jalep Says:

The match-up potential is downright cruel for many :D
Caro v Aga AGAIN
Venus v beijing home girl Peng
Karolina v Konta
Jankovic v Mladenovic and Doi
Kuznetsova v Doi

Muguruza is defending champion in Beijing…can and will she show up in the mood to fight? Tempting to pick her. Dang it.

Margot Says:

Thanks jalep, I’m in.

RZ Says:

Thanks Jalep. I have another crazy few days but will try to get to it. You are right those are some tough draws. So much depth in the women’s game these days.

jalep Says:

Margot, did you find our group? Jalep_wildguess or RCliff_hangers?


RZ, there’s only 9 hours left to join and pick for Beijing WTA Bracket Selection.

For ATP Tokyo and Beijing – you have nearly all weekend – through the early hours of Oct 3.

WTA Beijing is confusing to pick. I didn’t get to see the Petra’s destruction of Simona. I’m not sure if Petra hit her off the court or if Simona simply could play her best for some other reason.

There are some big names that didn’t go deep in Wuhan, like Karolina Pliskova that tempt me. And Mugu for the reason that if one keeps picking her eventually she’ll win…maybe.

Margot Says:

Jap I’ve done my picks but I don’t know how to join your group. Aaaah bit late now too.

Margot Says:

Delete that last comment, just found you :)

Willow Says:

Donk know where im going wrong Jalep / Margot, i keep trying to do these challenges, but the bloomin thing wont let me log in, keeps saying wrong password, never have any trouble with the ones for the GS though strangly enough (scratches head ) ….

jalep Says:

Oh good, Margot 😉

Willow, I if I recall, just set up an account (all they want is email, I think) and do whatever brackets you choose — there’s ATP Tokyo, Beijing, and WTA Beijing for about 8 more hours. I just picked Petra Kvitova to win! Seems ludicrous maybe but I’m all over the Petra train. Why not have her winning Wuhan and Beijing ….that would be the equivalent of Djokovic winning Indian Wells/Miami double. Petra looks that good at the moment.

Then go find where it says groups, click on browse, choose jalep or Cliffhangers and voila 😉

jalep Says:

Shoot me an email, if you’d like, I’m home today and will look for it, Willow :)

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