Belinda Bencic books last WTA Finals in Shenzhen slot; to face Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova for the Kremlin Cup title

Belinda Bencic needed to reach the final and outperform Kiki Bertens, who lost to Kristina Mladenovic in the quarter-finals, to secure her berth in the singles at Shenzhen.

Agence France-Presse October 19, 2019 21:37:19 IST
Belinda Bencic books last WTA Finals in Shenzhen slot; to face Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova for the Kremlin Cup title
  • Bencic duly sealed the eighth and final place at the tournament boasting record $14 million prize money with a confident performance to see off Mladenovic

  • It is the first time that Bencic has reached the WTA Finals

  • Season ending WTA Finals will be played between Barty, Pliskova, Halep, Andreescu, Osaka, Kvitova, Bencic and Svitolina

Moscow: World number 10 Belinda Bencic booked her place at the season-ending WTA Finals in Shenzhen with a 6-3, 6-4 win over Kristina Mladenovic in the Kremlin Cup semi-finals on Saturday.

Belinda Bencic books last WTA Finals in Shenzhen slot to face Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova for the Kremlin Cup title

File photo of Switzerland's Belinda Bencic. AP

The 22-year-old Swiss needed to reach the final and outperform Kiki Bertens, who lost to Mladenovic in the quarter-finals, to secure her berth in the singles at Shenzhen.

She duly sealed the eighth and final place at the tournament boasting record $14 million prize money with a confident performance to see off the French player.

"It’s a dream to be competing at the WTA Finals and to be one of the top eight," Bencic said.

"It makes it even more special that I booked my ticket at the last possible minute.

"This match had so much pressure and I was so nervous. Now I’m over the moon to win today and achieve this dream."

It is the first time that Bencic has reached the WTA Finals where she will line up against Ashleigh Barty, Karolina Pliskova, Simona Halep, Bianca Andreescu, Naomi Osaka, Petra Kvitova and Elina Svitolina.

"All the eight players deserve to be there because it shows we had the most consistent seasons," said Bencic who reached the semis of the US Open to climb back into the top 10 for the first time since 2015.

She also won the WTA event in Dubai and reached the final at the Mallorca Open.

Bencic will face Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova in the final on Sunday. Pavlyuchenkova beat Karolina Muchova 6-4, 6-7, 6-1 in the other semi-final.

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