Aryna Sabalenka offers empathy for Maria Sakkari after Greek broke down in tears

Sabalenka lost just one game during her WTA Finals opener against Sakkari.

by Dzevad Mesic
Aryna Sabalenka offers empathy for Maria Sakkari after Greek broke down in tears
© Getty Images Sport - Clive Brunskill

Aryna Sabalenka offered empathy for Maria Sakkari after the Greek tennis player cried on the court during a heavy loss at the WTA Finals. On Sunday, world No 1 Sabalenka crushed ninth-ranked Sakkari 6-0 6-1 at the WTA Finals in Cancun.

Going into the match, Sabalenka was the favorite to beat Sakkari and start her WTA Finals run with a win. But no one really expected that Sabalenka would win so dominantly. “She’s an amazing player. She’s always fighting for every ball.

I knew no matter what the score is that she’d fight for it. That’s what makes her a really tough opponent. You know against Maria, any time she can come back. You give her a little bit and she’ll take that and keep fighting.

I just tried to stay in the moment," Sabalenka said after beating Sakkari.

Sakkari on crying against Sabalenka

“I don’t have much to say.. I think it was pretty obvious I wasn’t feeling my game and wasn’t feeling comfortable out there.

Just a very, very bad day at the office. I just don’t think that I’m the first or the last person that has felt this way on the court or has cried on the court. It’s not nice. But no one likes to get chopped on the court," Sakkari said after the loss.

In the first set, Sakkari got bageled after getting broken three times and also missing out on four break points in the third game. After winning the first set without a dropped game, Sabalenka broke Sakkari in the second and fourth games and also saved a break point in the third game en route to taking a 5-0 second-set lead.

In the sixth game, Sakkari saved three match points on her serve before finally getting on the board. Sabalenka maybe missed out on three match points in the sixth game but she had no issues converting her fourth match point in the following game to complete a two-set win over Sakkari.

Aryna Sabalenka Maria Sakkari Wta Finals