Maria Sakkari defeated Ons Jabeur in the final group match of the WTA Tour Finals on Friday night to set the semifinal lineup.
Sakkari had already secured a place in the quarterfinals after a strong start, but her impressive 6-2, 6-3 win eliminated the Tunisian.
Instead, Aryna Sabalenka will join the Greek star in the final four.
Sakkari says that he is enjoying his game at the moment and that he tries not to think too much about his good form.
“I think I have to keep doing what I’ve been doing,” Sakkari said in his on-field interview.
“I trust myself. I’m not scared on the pitch. I enjoy it here. It’s no secret how I play, it was time to play well again. I’m really happy that it’s really happening here.”
Sakkari loves the woman who knocked her out of the final at Ons Jabeur and said she was delighted to share the big stage with her.
“We played each other years ago, I think it was in the Fed Cup,” Sakkari said of Jabeur.
“I joked with her that she used to hit me with drop shots all the time when I was playing in Montenegro, there was no one there on the Group 3 stage. Normal players back then. But we both worked until the end.”
Sakkari hasn’t had the best year, but his form improved in Guadalajara and he really clicked in Fort Worth.
He only had one top ten win on his way to the final, but has now had three in one week as he beat the pack.
Sabalenka was among those who lost to Sakkari, but continued after wins over Jabeur and American No. 1 Jessica Pegula.
She could have been eliminated if Jabeur had scored a straight sets win over Sakkari, but that did not materialize.
Sabalenka said she didn’t think about the permutations when she faced Pegula on Friday.
I would admit that I would have preferred to play the second game of the night.
“I keep telling myself: ‘Stay focused, keep fighting, it doesn’t matter, two or three sets, just get the win, the extra points,’” Sabalenka said.
“There was a little bit of pressure at the end because you try not to think about it, but this sticks in your mind. I’m glad I was able to finish it in two sentences.
“At the beginning I told my team that I would prefer to play the second game to know 100 per cent what I have to do to progress.”
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