Venus Williams vs Jelena Ostapenko, WTA Finals

Venus Williams vs Jelena Ostapenko, WTA Finals

Karolina Pliskova secured her place in the semi-finals of BNP Paribas WTA Finals in Singapore with a straight-sets win over Wimbledon champion Garbine Muguruza.

Saving a pair of break points which would've given Muguruza her first lead in the match to begin the second set, Pliskova's run of games streaked to six straight as she had all the answers to what the Spaniard threw at her.

"It's not easy to lose the first match ... you have to fight, what else can you do except try to fight and live another day". "Both of us are in the same situation and you have to fight".

The set eventually went to a tiebreak, which Ostapenko won 7-3 after Williams sliced a backhand into the net.

It failed to provide the momentum she wanted, though, as Williams collected the 20th break of an astonishing match, before serving out for the victory - converting her second match point.

Pliskova's victory means she will finish top of the White Group and knocks out winless No 7 seed Jelena Ostapenko.

Pliskova showed no indication of giving up the control she had established, firing off a cross-court backhand victor from a Muguruza second serve to break again and take her second set point.

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"Honestly, it was all credit to her, she came up with a lot of shots that you can't prepare for and that's why she's here in this tournament - she has a lot of talent and I was just happy to win that last point". 7-5 after three hours and 13 minutes of play.

However, she lost her serve four times in the final set to allow the American to keep her semi-final hopes alive.

In the end, the 37-year-old Williams emerged from a bruising encounter that featured 20 breaks of serve with a triumph built on her calmness at the key moments and ruthlessness when offered a chance to attack her opponent's weak second serve. Ostapenko recorded 48 winners but also made 40 unforced errors.

"Sometimes you need some luck".

After Williams beat Ostapenko, Pliskova needed 62 minutes to complete the victory over Muguruza.

In the 10th game of the set, Williams had a match point on Ostapenko's serve but the Latvian saved it before holding her serve to level the set at five-all.

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