x

Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 17 November 2018

Daria Kasatkina hits out at WTA Elite Trophy scheduling after Madison Keys defeat

Russian, who finished her previous round-robin tie against Wang Qiang at 10pm on Tuesday, looked tired on court and had already criticised the match timetable, saying it 'sucks'

Daria Kasatkina of Russia was beaten with relative ease by the 23-year-old American Madison Keys, who took 70 minutes to seal the win 6-2, 6-4. AFP
Daria Kasatkina of Russia was beaten with relative ease by the 23-year-old American Madison Keys, who took 70 minutes to seal the win 6-2, 6-4. AFP

Top seed Daria Kasatkina slammed the tournament scheduling at the WTA Elite Trophy in China on Wednesday after losing in straight sets to Madison Keys.

Kasatkina, 21, was beaten with relative ease by the 23-year-old American, who took 70 minutes to seal the win 6-2, 6-4.

The Russian, who finished her previous round-robin tie against Wang Qiang at 10pm on Tuesday, looked tired on court and had already criticised the match timetable, saying it "sucks".

Asked if she stood by the comments at her post-match press conference on Wednesday, she took a deep breath and said: "Yeah. I mean if they want me to pull out of the tournament then they are doing a good job, because in less than 24 hours I've played two matches.

"The girls [Keys and Wang] are not playing tomorrow, they are playing on Friday, and I was supposed to play two matches in less than 24 hours.

"So there's nothing I can say, nothing I can do. I was fighting, I mean I did everything I could.

"I gave more than 100 per cent of my abilities, so this is professional sport."

_______________

Read more:

Aryna Sabalenka edges out Ashleigh Barty in Zhuhai opener

Dominic Thiem, Hyeon Chung and Karen Khachanov join Mubadala World Tennis Championship

Kevin Anderson to return to Abu Dhabi to defend Mubadala World Tennis Championship title

Novak Djokovic and Venus Williams confirmed for Mubadala World Tennis Championship

_______________

Keys cruised to take the first set at the Hengqin International Tennis Center, and although Kasatkina put up a fight in the second, the sixth seed clinched the tie.

The American showed little sign of the left knee injury which forced her to retire from her last two tournaments, in Wuhan and Beijing.

After the match, she said: "I think I had a really good start today, and that definitely helped me.

"Overall, I think I just played really solid and went out and did what I needed to do."

Earlier, defending champion Julia Goerges suffered a bruising defeat to Anett Kontaveit.

The fifth seed took a nasty tumble mid-way through the match, which she went on to lose 2-6, 6-4, 4-6 after more than two hours.

Kontaveit, the tournament 10th seed, started brightly, breaking the world No 14 three times to take the opening set.

Goerges, 29, fell heavily on to the hard court in the sixth game of the second set, and needed to ice her right leg during the changeover.

Clearly slightly rattled, the German nevertheless dug deep to claim the set, pumping her fist and gesturing to her coach as she celebrated.

However, it was the 22-year-old Estonian Kontaveit who won the decider.

World No 20 Kontaveit has now played both her round-robin matches, after losing on Tuesday to Belgium's Elise Mertens, who will play Goerges on Thursday.

Wednesday's third and last match saw Spain's Garbine Muguruza beat China's Zhang Shuai.

The seventh seed dropped the first set, but recovered to win 3-6, 6-3, 6-2 in just over two hours.

In her post-match press conference, the 25-year-old said: "I didn't start very well. I didn't find my rhythm and I was giving her a lot of free points.

"After the first set I thought, it doesn't matter, we have another set ... It was a good challenge for me to look for something more and to try to change it and to have the chance to win the match again."