Friday, December 3

Muguruza is released in Dubai | sports

After a long journey through the desert, Garbiñe Muguruza he was reunited with a prize that had been resisting him since April 9, 2019. That day he triumphed in Monterrey, the date of his last title, the last time he had managed to sing a bingo until this Saturday he uncorked the champagne again. It was in Dubai, after beating Barbora Krejcikova in the final of the emirate by 7-6 (8) and 6-3, in 2h 08m. The trophy finally arrived and at the same time the culmination, because the reset of the last year had not yet been accompanied by a joy. Muguruza finally triumphed and, definitely, came to say that here she is, that she is coming back for everyone and that she is applying for everything this season.

Success in Dubai is the realization that she is one of the tennis players of the moment. With the permission of Naomi Osaka, who won the Australian Open, she is the highest-winning player in the first quarter (18, from just four losses) and the one who is setting the pace today. The Japanese blocked her way in the second round of Melbourne, where she could not with Ashleigh Barty in the preparatory previous to the Australian great; and last week it was Petra Kvitova who denied her the reward in the Doha final. However, Muguruza did not give up and the radical turn that he gave at the beginning of last year had the desired confirmation with the revenge of this Saturday.

It arrived 704 days after that morning in Mexico, nothing to see from one Garbiñe to another. Disoriented then, doubts are far away and today she competes with certainties and conviction, aware that at her best level she is a player that is difficult to approach. Conchita Martínez has a lot to do with it, a fundamental factor in a straightening that began with the final of the Australian Open last year (in favor of Sofia Kenin) and that was interrupted by the outbreak of the pandemic, when she had already taken a run. The break, however, did not stop the will to return to the good path, the one that led her to elevate Roland Garros (2016) and Wimbledon (2017), and also reach the world throne.

Muguruza (27 years old) wants to return under his jurisdiction and obtaining the title in Dubai helps greatly to clear the path. The effort only lacked the icing on the metal, a trophy that would return him to the winning path and endorse the physical and mental ascent of a champion wounded in pride. Away from the foreground for a long time, the start of this season puts it back under the spotlight and is a warning: Garbiñe is already here. It is now up to you to determine for how long. For now, the layout of the last two weeks is a declaration of intent. Despite the accumulation of matches and continued attrition, he once again delivered a consistent and linear performance, with no potholes. She beat Krejcikova in a very tough duel that the Czech (25 years old, 63rd in the WTA) insisted on entangling, in both directions.

Some discomfort in a thumb delayed the start, and after the first set gave way, after a 1h 05 minutes of erosion and response, he went to the locker room and postponed the start of the second for 12 minutes. It was of no use to him. Even more intoned and determined, Muguruza approached the continuation with the clearest ideas. By then he had saved a set ball against and had hit the fourth, but in the second set the debate was more bearable. Demanding, but controlled. Garbiñe started with a break and to which it was intoned a bit with the backhand, the Czech lost the central zone and therefore the possibility of making free kicks. His enveloping right lost tone and despite his attempts to tangle the pulse (constant threats to serve, arrests to the rest …) he ended up signing the surrender.

So Muguruza poses again with a trophy. It is the eighth as a professional and the first for a Spanish woman in Dubai. He secured 900 points – and a three-spot promotion in the ranking, until the thirteenth — and above all a soul boost that I needed for a long time. Close to the level that raised him to the altars, everything begins to square little by little: Conchita arrived, order arrived and the appetite lost. You want to be noticed again and you have chosen the right path. Work and tennis. The rest, he puts his racket. Muguruza knocks on the door again. And there are reasons to believe.

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