Over a year ago Elina Svitolina was the last winner of the WTA Finals in Singapore. Until last week the Ukrainian went on a 15 month search for her next WTA singles title.
Despite making back to back Grans Slam semi-finals in London and New York last summer for the first time it was a tough season for Elina who just struggled against the in-form players.
2020 hadn’t really been going to plan, early exits were the story in Dubai and Brisbane, her time in Hua-Hin ended shorter than expected and in Melbourne she was brushed aside by Muguruza in round three.
Another early exit in Qatar meant that Svitolina was heading to Monterrey on the back of three consecutive defeats and just four wins in nine in 2020.
Heading to Monterrey was quite a bold decision from the 25 year old. When you are in this difficult run of form and things aren’t happening for you it is difficult to either keep going or take a break.
Four wins in nine isn’t exactly disastrous but it was the manor of her defeats that was a concern against in-form players once again.
Svitolina in Monterrey had an easier field but you can only play who is in front of you. It was until the final against Maria Bouzkova where the 25 year old was fully tested going to three sets and battled hard to win 7-5 4-6 6-4 to lift her firs title of the season.
On route to the final she saw off Run, Govortsova, Kovinic as well as in-form Canadian teenager Leylah Fernandez.
There will be tougher tests to follow throughout the season but this is a big moment for Elina. It is a bit of relief and she can relax a little bit more now. I’m interested to see how the Ukrainian gets on in the big stages against the big players this year which was her downfall in 2019.