Written by Staff Writer
Maria Sakkari of Greece became the first woman from her nation to qualify for the season-ending WTA Finals for eight consecutive years when she lost the Sydney International final to Czech Barbora Strycova on Tuesday.
Two matches of flying defense before her tilt at the Hall of Fame Championships made up the pair of matches and it was Strycova who came out on top 4-6, 6-2, 6-1.
The 29-year-old qualifier from the Czech Republic, who finished the match in severe pain after losing the first two sets, did not use the injury as an excuse as she had a chance to win the match in straight sets.
Sakkari, who has committed to compete on the WTA Tour until 2019, has in fact earned a three-match increase in ranking points this year and therefore will be a great prospect for next year’s WTA Finals which will also bring with it an automatic spot for the United States.
“I’m very grateful to have qualified for the WTA Finals in every year since 2010, something that nobody from Greece has ever done,” Sakkari said.
“I’m looking forward to competing at the WTA Finals on the hard court for the first time next year. I’m sorry that I couldn’t win today, but all the hard work this year and throughout the season to get to number one was well worth it.”