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The Davis Cup favourites, Daniil Medvedev and Andrey Rublev, representing the Russian Tennis Federation rather than their country as it is banned from international competition for state doping violations, cruised into the final at the Caja Magica in Madrid, after...

Darlene Hard dies at 85

Darlene Hard, winner of 21 major titles in the 1950s and 60s, has died at the age of 85 in Los Angeles on Thursday at the Northridge Hospital after a brief illness, according to Mona Cravens, Director of Student Publications at the University of Southern California,...

Croatia knock Serbia out

Novak Djokovic's dream of leading Serbia to a second Davis Cup title was shattered on Friday when neighbours, Croatia, twice former campions, knocked them out of this year’s competition at the semi-final stage.

China pushes back on WTA decision to suspend Chinese tournaments

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The RFT slip into the DC semis

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WTA suspends business with China

The WTA is making good on its threat to pull its business out of China by announcing that it will suspend tournaments in both China and Hong Kong unless the Chinese authorities take steps to address Peng Shuai’s allegations of sexual abuse and concerns for her welfare...

Djokovic pulls Serbia through to semis

Serbia reached the reformatted Davis Cup semi-finals in Madrid with a 2-1 victory over Kazakhstan after the world No.1 Novak Djokovic came to the team’s rescue.

Konta retires

Former British No 1 Johanna Konta announced her retirement from competitive tennis at the age of 30 on Wednesday in London.

Why Peng Shuai remains of grave concern

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Germany squeeze past Britain to reach Madrid.

In the second of the Davis Cup quarterfinals Germany upset Great Britain, squeezing past the favourites in Innsbruk 2-1 to make the Madrid semi-finals later in the week.
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Swiatek, Muguruza and Badosa confirmed for WTA Finals

When Ash Barty confirmed what many believed would be the case, that the World No 1 would not be defending her WTA Final title, Iga Swiatek, Garbiñe Muguruza and Paula Badosa secured their places next month, joining Aryna Sabalenka, Barbora Krejcikova, Karolina Pliskova and Maria Sakkari in the 8-woman singles field in Mexico.

Barty cited the strict COVID-19 travel and quarantine restrictions in Australia as one of the reasons for her decision, while the 25-year-old also said that she wanted to focus on preparing for the start of next season as she bids to win the Australian Open for the first time in January.

“I wanted to let everyone know that I won’t be competing in any further tournaments in 2021, including the WTA Finals in Mexico,” Barty said in a statement. “It was a difficult decision but I need to prioritise my body and my recovery from our 2021 season.

“With ongoing challenges of travelling back to Queensland and quarantine requirements, I am not willing to compromise my preparation for January.

“I wish the WTA team and the players all the best for a successful WTA Finals and the rest of the year.”

Despite not playing since September’s US Open, where she lost in the 3rd round, Barty is guaranteed to finish the year as World No 1.

As Barty calls time on her season, which saw her win 5 titles including a second Grand Slam crown at Wimbledon in July, the Porsche Race to the WTA Finals is coming down to the wire, with the last remaining place hanging in the balance between Ons Jabeur and Anett Kontaveit.

This year’s season-ending championships are due to be held in Guadalajara from 10-17 November, after being moved from Shenzhen in China because of the pandemic.

Five of the 8 doubles teams have also confirmed their attendance in Guadalajara, which include Krejcikova & Katerina Siniakova, Shuko Aoyama & Ena Shibahara, Hsieh Su-Wei & Elise Mertens, Nicole Melichar-Sanchez & Demi Schuurs, and Samantha Stosur & Zhang Shuai.

In the singles, Swiatek will be making her debut appearance at the WTA Finals and is the first Polish woman to qualify since Agnieszka Radwanska in 2016.

Muguruza is set to appear at the WTA Finals in singles for the 4th time, with her best result coming on her debut in 2015, where she posted a perfect 3-0 record in the group stage before falling to eventual champion Radwanska in the semi-finals.

She contested the group stage again in 2016 and 2017 and has also qualified in doubles twice with compatriot Carla Suárez Navarro, in 2014 and then again 2015, when the team finished as runners-up.

Badosa has enjoyed a breakout year in 2021, winning the biggest title of her career at Indian Wells earlier this month and earning a new career-high ranking of No 13 in the process.

She, too, is making her debut at the WTA Finals.


World No 1 Ash Barty has decided not to defend the WTA Finals title that she won in 2019 before the pandemic struck

© Jordan Mansfield/Getty Images for LTA




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