Monday, 25 January, 2021

Sabalenka into Abu Dhabi Final with 14th Straight Win

Aryna Sabalenka wins Abu Dhabi Open for her third straight WTA tour title Aryna Sabalenka wins 3rd straight title at Abu Dhabi Open
Cary Erickson | 14 January, 2021, 14:25

Sabalenka had eight aces in her 6-3, 6-2 victory over Maria Sakkari.

'I am really proud of the fact that I was fighting no matter what, the 22-year-old told reporters.

Sabalenka earns her ninth career WTA title and her third straight after finishing a year ago with back-to-back wins in Ostrava and Linz.

Speaking with the press after the match, Sabalenka said, "I'm just focusing on the right things".

KUDERMETOVA CONQUERS KOSTYUK: Meanwhile, contesting the biggest semi-final of her career, Kudermetova survived a 60-minute first-set battle on her way to a 7-6 (10/8), 6-4 win over Ukrainian teenager Marta Kostyuk.

The Abu Dhabi Open final between Sabalenka and Kudermetova will be their first meeting in nearly six years - going back to the ITF Antalya Open in 2015. "Some matches, I didn't feel my serve, some matches I didn't feel my forehand or backhand, but I would just keep fighting, finding my shots, and that this is what I'm really proud of, and really happy with this title".

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Sabalenka will rise three places to seventh in the rankings.

"I'm really happy to keep winning, and I'll do everything I can to keep winning!"

Sabalenka extended her streak to fourteen wins in a row by beating the player Helena in 57 minutes 6-3 and 6-2, which he has won in his last four games.

Kostyuk had 22 winners to Kudermetova's 21, but the World No.99 from Ukraine, who was in her first WTA semifinal, had three more unforced errors than the Russian.

"She played lights-out tennis, she gave me zero chances", said the 22nd-ranked Sakkari. "I think we all have the same dream, so nothing really special". "But my idol now in life is Khabib Nurmagomedov".