Svitolina Comeback Beats Stephens in WTA Finals Final
by Staff | October 28th, 2018, 12:39 pm

This time it was the Ukraine’s Elina Svitolina’s turn for a comeback.
Trailing by a set, the 24-year-old won her biggest career title on Sunday, defeating American Sloane Stephens 3-6, 6-2, 6-2 in the final of the BNP Paribas WTA Finals Singapore.

“I think I have nothing to prove anymore to anyone,” Svitolina said afterwards. “It’s definitely a good statement for myself and good boost of — I can’t say confidence, because I try to always have confidence in myself, to have it is my personality. I think for me it’s just that the third set really showed that I was mentally tough. That’s what made the difference.”

The No. 6-seeded Svitolina captured the title in only her second appearance at the year-end finals, last year losing in the round robin portion of the championships in her debut.

She improved to 13-2 in career finals, not losing a match all week in Singapore. It was her fourth title of 2018 following Brisbane, Dubai, and Rome.

The Ukrainian almost missed qualifying for the WTA Finals after some early-round losses in the lead-up to Singapore.

“I was clear with what I had to do on court,” she said. “I have been working really, really hard. Even though my results wasn’t good, since Wimbledon, I had four or five weeks where I was on court and in the gym working. These past five months, there have been lots of work that I was putting in. That’s why for me it was a little bit disappointing, and I was trying to stay very positive, because I was giving everything on the practice court and results were…not what I expected. That’s why I was a little bit sad.”

Svitolina entered the final trailing Stephens 1-2 in their career head-to-head encounters. Stephens in her prior semifinal beat Karolina Pliskova after losing the first set 6-0, and Svitolina also won a three-setter in her semi.

Stephens looked to continue her dominating form from the week when she took a 3-0 lead en route to capturing the first set. In the second set Stephens dropped serve for the first time with the help of a handful on enforced errors to give Svitolina a 3-1 lead, and Svitolina would drop only one other game to force a third.

Svitolina immediately took control in the third, breaking for a 3-0 lead. Stephens brought it back to 3-2, but Svitolina ran the table from there to put the match away 6-2 with the help of a flurry of errors from the American.

Prior to the final Stephens said her 2018 results have validated her as a consistent Top 10 player.

“After the US Open last year, everyone was, like, ‘Oh, she’s a one-hit wonder, she’ll never do anything again, it was just lucky, no one was playing, blah, blah, blah,’…this season I was like ‘I really want to play a little more consistent, I want to have some better results in the bigger tournaments and just do better to show that I’m a Top 10 or top-whatever player. I think I did that throughout the year.”

The 24-year-old Stephens fell to 1-3 in finals this year and 6-3 career.

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2 Comments for Svitolina Comeback Beats Stephens in WTA Finals Final

RZ Says:

Svitolina has quite a good record against other top 10 players. Maybe she can finally turn around her dismal slam record next year.

Crazy that Sloane had never lost any finals until this year.

Humble Rafa Says:

I can’t believe the Lady didn’t fight with the umpire to stand up for her daughter. Oh, this one has no daughter. Never mind.

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