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Rybakina defeated the Ukrainian in Stuttgart and received a new car. But she still has no rights.

Date: May 30, 2024 Time: 18:52:17

On Sunday, April 21, the final match of the WTA-500 tournament took place in Stuttgart (Germany). The participants in the title showdown were 2022 Wimbledon champion Elena Rybakina, the fourth seed, and world number 27 Marta Kostyuk.

In the previous two seasons in the 500 meters in Stuttgart, the representative of Kazakhstan could not overcome the barrier of the second round. However, this year everything has changed. In the second round match, Elena broke the resistance of Russian Veronika Kudermetova in a brilliant three-set match 7:6, 1:6, 6:4. In the quarterfinals, the winner of the TBS on grass also defeated the Italian Jasmine Paolini only in the decisive match 6:3, 5:7, 6:3.

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And in the semifinals, Rybakina faced another battle with the leader of the WTA rankings, Iga Swiatek. The Polish player, who won the tournament in Germany two years in a row, approached this match as the couple’s favorite. In addition, the path of the world’s first racket to the head-to-head confrontation with one of the main rivals was less thorny. Swiatek finished off strong Belgian Elise Mertens and 2021 US Open champion Emma Raducana in straight sets. However, in the Stuttgart semi-finals, Elena once again demonstrated how she can beat even the four-time Major winner. Rybakina turned out to be stronger than the 22-year-old Warsaw native by 6:3, 4:6, 6:3. Thus, the fourth racket in the world reached the fifth final of WTA tournaments this season. The last time Belarusian legend Victoria Azarenka reached five finals in the first four months of the season was in 2012.

As you know, at the Stuttgart competitions, in addition to prizes and ranking points, the organizers give the tournament champion a Porsche. Rybakina herself admitted after the fight with Swiatek that she would be more motivated to get a driver’s license if she won a car in the “five hundred” field. “I have wanted to get a driver’s license for a long time, but I have never had the opportunity to stay in one place for a long time. I had a couple of lessons and drove, but getting my driver’s license is definitely a goal for this year off the field. And this car, if I win it, can become a double motivation. I hope to achieve it this year (smiles),” the athlete shared at a press conference after reaching the final of the tournament in Stuttgart.

Elena Rybakina’s opponent in the final was Marta Kostyuk. This week the Ukrainian is showing excellent results. In the first round of the prestigious German tournament, the 21-year-old player from kyiv defeated court owner Laura Siegemund in a difficult three-set match 6:3, 6:7, 6:4. And then the 27th racket in the world scored three (!) victories over representatives of the top 10 of the women’s world ranking, defeating in turn Zheng Qingwen, Corey Gauff and Marketa Vondrousova. The last two tennis players are also Grand Slam champions. Marta thus reached the 3rd final of her career.

Marta Kostyuk

Photo: Alex Grimm/Getty Images

The score of personal matches in adult tennis is the same: 1-1. Kostyuk won in three sets (6:7(5), 6:2, 6:3) in the second round of Adelaide 2023, and Rybakina took revenge with great confidence at the start of the US Open – 2023 – 6:2, 6 :1.

From the beginning of the new head-to-head, Elena, as expected, took advantage by playing as number one. Already at the beginning of the match, the fourth racket in the world broke to zero and then remained 2-0. Rybakina served well, she constantly strove to attack when the opportunity arose, she regularly held on to the reception and was not at all opposed to playing the ball for a long time. Even in long rallies, the 2022 Wimbledon champion had a notable advantage. Finally, at the end of the set, the representative of Kazakhstan again took the other’s serve and confidently closed the score 6-2 in 31 minutes. It should be noted that Kostyuk did not score more than two goals at the reception of the opening match.

Elena Rybakina

Photo: Alex Grimm/Getty Images

The nature of the second set didn’t change much. Elena broke again and maintained the lead at 2:0. Then the girls won games with their serve. The key moment of the match was their fifth game, which lasted more than 10 minutes. Marta had three break points at the same time, but the Ukrainian did not take advantage of any of her chances. As a result, her opponent held her serve and led with a score of 4:2. This moment was a turning point in today’s matchup: Rybakina felt confident and rushed forward, taking the game not only with herself, but also with her opponent’s serve 5:2. The representative of Kazakhstan only had to show up for the match and she was able to do it. 6:2, 6:2 – this is the result with which Elena defeated Marta Kostyuk. For Rybakina, this is the third title this season and the eighth of her career. The newly crowned Stuttgart champion also became the owner of a new Porsche. Now all Elena has to do is keep her promise and approve her license!

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Puck Henry
Puck Henry
Puck Henry is an editor for ePrimefeed covering all types of news.
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