Maria Sharapova defeats Radwanska in WTA Finals Singapore opener

Maria Sharapova shook of a bit of rust in her game and battled it out in her opening round match at the WTA Finals in Singapore on Sunday. Sharapova defeated Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland 4-6, 6-3, 6-4 in a match that lasted two hours and 47 minutes. This is Sharapova’s first full match since reach the semifinal in Wimbledon last July. She was in Wuhan a month ago but had to retire from the match due to nagging leg and arm injuries.

“This is my first completed match since July, so it’s a pretty big deal for me!” Sharapova said. “Coming into this event I did everything I could to be healthy. I just didn’t quite know how my results would go. Even though I didn’t play my best tennis today I still got through, and that’s what matters, especially against such a tough competitor like Radwanska. We always have such close matches here.”

“To fight hard and be able to win the match in the end means so much to me,” she added.

The five-time Grand Slam champion has qualified for the year-end championships for the eighth time in her career.

“I’m so happy I’m at this point, but it’s one match down – I still have a few to go,” she said.

Radwanska assessed her performance and admitted that staging a comeback in the match came too late.

“I definitely didn’t use my chances,” Radwanska said. “I started slowly in the second set and I guess I was too late to come back. Obviously in that third set I could have come back to 5-all, at least.

“In those kinds of matches, when you’re not using your chances, it’s not really ending your way,” she said.

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