WTA Tour

Pennetta keeps WTA Finals hopes alive

2015-10-27 14:25
Flavia Pennetta (File)

Singapore - Goodbye girl Flavia Pennetta kept her hopes of one last title alive on Tuesday when she beat Poland's Agnieszka Radwanska 7-6 (7/5), 6-4 at the WTA Finals in Singapore.

The 33-year-old Italian, who announced she will retire at the end of the season after winning her first Grand Slam at the US Open, played an aggressive cross-court game to neutralise the stubborn defensive skills of Radwanska.

"I tried to be really focused, tried to be aggressive and hit the ball hard, and don't give her too much time to do her job," Pennetta said after the match. "My serve helped me a lot today."

Pennetta said she was enjoying every moment on the court after declaring her retirement plans.

"It's the last tournament of the year. It's the last moment, it's special to me," she said.

"Here it's like you're playing the final of a Grand Slam every match, so you try your best."

Fifth seed Radwanska, 26, won the Pan Pacific Open in Tokyo and the Tianjin Open in the run-up to Singapore, but is now staring at elimination in the Red Group if top seed Simona Halep beats Maria Sharapova later in the day.

Pennetta would then fight Sharapova for the second spot in the group in the round-robin tournament of the world's top eight players, which world No 1 Serena Williams has skipped to get some rest.

Halep won 6-0,6-3 on Monday against Pennetta, while Radwanska lost a three-set marathon to Sharapova.

Pennetta would have been eliminated if she had lost in straight sets to Radwanska.

The Pole got an early service break in the first set but Pennetta bounced back to level the match at 3-3, only to be broken again.

Pennetta won another break to equalise at 5-5 and held serve to go on top, but Radwanska forced a tie break.

Pennetta won the tiebreak 7/5 with a curling drop shot that set up a winner as Radwanska watched helplessly from the net.

The Italian sought treatment in the second set for a foot blister and proceeded to break Radwanska in the seventh game with a stinging backhand winner down the line.

Another drop shot and easy winner to an open court put the Italian on top 5-3.

Radwanska saved three match points in the next game but Pennetta sealed the match with another backhand winner to win 6-4.

Read more on:    wta finals  |  flavia pennetta  |  tennis

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