After Elina Svitolina scored a retirement victory over Belinda Bencic to return to the championship match of the WTA Finals on Saturday, world No.1 Ashleigh Barty came from a set down to defeat world No.2 Karolina Pliskova.
After saving multiple break points in her first two service games, Barty eventually succumbed on her eighth and in the following game Pliskova consolidated the break to go 4-2 up. The Czech hung on to that lead and claimed the set, attacking Barty’s second serve, as the Australian was getting 64% first serves in and winning just 33% of her second serve points.
Barty saved four break points in the third game of the second set and then built a 4-1 lead. Three games later, the Roland Garros champion earned another break to take the match to a deciding set, which the Australian controlled to win 4-6 6-2 6-3 and reach Sunday’s final.
The 23-year-old Barty lost all five previous meetings against her upcoming opponent Svitolina.