Russia’s Svetlana Kuznetsova overcame defending champion Agnieszka Radwanska in a thrilling round-robin encounter at the WTA Finals on Monday.
Kuznetsova only secured her place at the season-ending event with victory in Saturday’s Kremlin Cup final and carried over her winning momentum to Singapore.
Despite falling 4-1 behind in the first set Kuznetsova clawed herself level to then claim it 7-5.
Radwanska dominated the second 6-1 to level matters.
Early on in the decider and to the surprise of all watching Kuznetsova decided to cut her pony tail off with some scissors during a switch over.
The new-look and lighter Russian then battled through the third and staved off a match point to win it 7-5 and seal an opening win in the White Group.
Tournament debutant and world number five Korlina Pliskova also fended off a match point to beat Spain’s Garbine Muguruza in three sets.
Pliskova stormed through the first set of her White group opener 6-2, but was pegged back in the second by a determined Muguruza, who won the French Open this year.
Muguruza claimed the second set on a tiebreak and then powered her way into a 5-2 lead in the third.
Pliskova saved a match point in that game and then won five games on the trott to escape with a hard fought victory.
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