Venus Williams powers into semis at WTA Finals

Venus Williams powers into semis at WTA Finals”

The American, 37, won 7-5 6-4 in Singapore to secure second place in the White Group behind Karolina Pliskova.

It was her first win in three meetings against the third seed, who claimed the marathon three-set classic at the Australian Open this year.

SINGAPORE-Venus Williams reached the semifinals at the WTA Finals by beating Wimbledon champion Garbine Muguruza 7-5, 6-4 on Thursday.

"I played an wonderful opponent who has had an incredible year so I was so happy to win the last point", Williams said.

"I think it is great to finish the season this way", Ostapenko said after the match.

Her advantage quickly disappeared, though, as the resilient Williams hit straight back, a pinpoint topspin forehand keeping Muguruza in check.

With the victory, Williams maintains her hopes of returning to world number one - a position she last held in 2002 - by winning the season finale on Sunday.

Williams' backhand was particularly effective as she recovered from breaks down in both sets to book her spot in the last four.

"I use a lot of sun protection, I eat a lot of fruit and vegetables, and that's been the key to my success", Williams jokingly said when asked about the cause of her longevity.

It is a second group stage exit in as many years for the Spaniard at the Finals, while Venus remains in contention for a second crown, having won the tournament in 2008.

While it was all smiles and laughter from Williams following her win, Pliskova said she struggled for motivation in her defeat to Ostapenko. "I knew here that it's going to be tough, the best eight players are playing". "Wasn't being ever in this situation, so I felt weird today".

Despite the setback, Pliskova remained confident of bouncing back in her semi-final tomorrow. Muguruza, Simona Halep, Elina Svitolina and Caroline Wozniacki also have a chance to become the year-end No. 1.

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