Losing to a Tournament’s Eventual Champion: Part Two (WTA)

By Jack Edward

Part One can be found here.

Welcome to the last part in our ‘Losing to a Tournament’s Eventual Champion’ series.

I take it you know how this works by now – you wanna get down to the nitty-gritty of the players that couldn’t stop losing to TECs, the real casualties of the tour…


You want me to shut up and get on with it…

Have it your way!

Joint-Second: Six Losses

At joint-second, we have three players with six losses to TECs this year! Our first two share similar(ish) stories…

Ons Jabeur (#10):

  1. Sabalenka in Abu Dhabi (3R)
  2. Osaka at the Australian Open (3R)
  3. Sharma at MUSC Health Open (F)
  4. Ostapenko in Eastbourne (2R)
  5. Muguruza at the Chicago Fall Classic (F)
  6. Badosa in Indian Wells (SF)

Barbora Krejčíková (#5):

  1. Muguruza in Dubai (F)
  2. Świątek in Rome (3R)
  3. Barty at Wimbledon (4R)
  4. Bencic at the Olympics (3R)
  5. Barty in Cincinnati (QF)
  6. Badosa in Indian Wells (3R)

Both Jabeur and Krejčíková broke out this year, the latter of course taking the French Open title. 

Amidst all of their winning, they happened to run into tough opponents early in tournaments – Jabeur was particularly unlucky to run into Sabalenka, Osaka and Ostapenko in Abu Dhabi, Australia and Eastbourne, respectively. 

The warning signs were there for Krejčíková’s opponents after she’d narrowly missed two match points against Iga Świątek in Rome. It was after winning the French Open that Krejčíková will be feeling most aggrieved – despite the ranking bump, Krejčíková lost to Barty at Wimbledon and Cincinnati, lost early to Bencic at the Olympics and was taken down by Badosa in the third-round of Indian Wells.

Both players deserved better than this surely?

Then there’s *ahem*…

Katerina Siniakova (#49):

  1. Gauff in Parma (SF)
  2. Kerber in Bad Homburg (F)
  3. Barty at Wimbledon (3R)
  4. Krejčíková in Prague (QF)
  5. Kontaveit in Cleveland (QF)
  6. Kontaveit in Moscow (1R)

Poor Siniaková definitely didn’t deserve this. Like Alexandrova in part one, Siniaková was repeatedly handed shite draws, Barty in the third-round of Wimbledon being the hardest to stomach and the end of her season spoilt by two losses to Kontaveit in red-hot form. 

Here’s hoping a change in fortune awaits the world #49 in 2022!

First: Seven Losses

And finally…

Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova (#11):

  1. Osaka at the Australian Open (1R)
  2. Kasatkina at the Phillip Island Trophy (3R)
  3. Kvitova in Qatar (2R)
  4. Sabalenka in Madrid (SF)
  5. Krejčíková at the French Open (F)
  6. Ostapenko in Eastbourne (1R)
  7. Bencic at the Olympics (QF)

Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova tops the list with seven losses to a TEC this season!

The Russian couldn’t catch a break at the start of the season, her loss to Osaka in the first-round of the Australian Open probably the worst of the lot. Even after reaching the top-20 following the French Open, she was given a cruel first-round against Ostapenko in Eastbourne and came up against an inspired Bencic in Tokyo.

What was a good season could have been a great season if she’d been more fortunate. Fingers crossed for 2022…

Losing to a TEC in 2021

That’s it!

Of all the players mentioned, I feel the most sympathetic towards Siniaková. She lost a lot of close matches this year to superb players, surely deserving a higher spot than #49 in the world. 

Kateřina Siniaková shakes hands with Ash Barty after a 3-6, 5-7 loss in the third round of the 2021 Wimbledon Championships. Photo credit: Getty Images

Do you feel sorry for any of these players or is there a black void where your emotions should be? I can’t help you out in the case of the latter I’m afraid.

Do you want to know your own favourite player’s record this season? This I can help you with – shoot me a wee tweet and I’ll gladly respond (@jackedward1994)!

Speak soon,


Jack Edward can be found @jackedward1994 on Twitter. He is the author of the ‘On The Line’ blog and the host of the On The Line Tennis Podcast. His work features plenty more deep statistical dives and a very fine attention to detail. You can check out each of his creations here.


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