Aryna Sabalenka started her 2023 WTA Finals campaign in stunning form, defeating Maria Sakkari with a score of 6-0, 6-1. However, the tennis star had a lot to say about the organization of the year-end championships and the playing conditions.
In a detailed statement on her social media, Sabalenka expressed her disappointment with the WTA and the quality of the hardcourts used for the tournament. She voiced her concerns about safety on the court and the lack of adequate practice time.
“I am very disappointed with the WTA and the experience so far at the WTA Finals,” she wrote. “As a player, I really feel disrespected by the WTA. This is not the level of organization we expect for the Finals.”
Sabalenka didn’t mince words when she mentioned feeling unsafe on the court due to inconsistent bounce and the limited practice opportunity. She emphasized the high stakes of the event and the need for reliable playing conditions.
Despite her criticism of the WTA, Sabalenka showed appreciation for the local organizers and Mexican fans, acknowledging that the court was built at the last minute and expressing her love for being in Mexico.
In her next match, Aryna Sabalenka will face Jessica Pegula, aiming to secure her position as the group winner. With a 4-1 head-to-head advantage over Pegula and a history of success against her, Sabalenka enters the match as the favorite.
However, her final group-stage match against Elena Rybakina promises to be a tougher challenge, given Rybakina’s recent victory over Sabalenka in the 2023 China Open quarterfinals.