Photo: WTA / Akron WTA Finals
Sharon Fichman and Giuliana Olmos’ WTA Finals campaign ended with a 6-4, 7-6(3) defeat to No. 3 seeds Hsieh Su-wei and Elise Mertens, but the Canadian’s early exit doesn’t take away from her impressive season and the fact that it finished with an appearance at the year-end event in Guadalajara, Mexico.
Heading into the match against Hsieh and Mertens, Fichman and Olmos knew that only a straight-sets victory would secure their passage out of the group after Katerina Siniakova and Barbora Krejcikova’s win over Desirae Krawczyk and Alexa Guarachi earlier on Monday.
Entering the day’s play with an 0-2 record, the Canadian and Mexican pairing still had a shot at advancing with a win because competition rules state that in the event two teams finish the round robin with the same record they’d be split based on the percentage of sets won.
Unfortunately, Fichman and Olmos’ goal of making the final four was dashed when, in the first set, both teams exchanged five breaks of serve but three of them went the way of their opponents to ensure they claimed the opener 6-4.
In the second set, the stats were relatively even as both teams broke the other twice to force a tiebreak decider. There, it was Hseih and Mertens who held the upper hand as they crafted three minibreaks to take the set 7-6(3) and the match in straight sets.
Fichman qualified for the Finals following an incredible year which saw her compete for Team Canada at the Olympics and culminated with her reaching a career-high doubles ranking of No. 26 earlier this month. In May, she and Olmos won the WTA 1000 Italian Open event in Rome, the biggest title of her career so far.