The 2023 WTA Finals have been in the spotlight for some time already, but not because of good reasons. The stadium, at which the event is held, was unfinished when players arrived in Cancun, and they were not happy about it.
Elena Rybakina was one of the players that wasn't happy and also talked about the situation, but seemingly, all players realized that all they can do is adapt to the situation and try their best.
Ahead of the tournament, Pegula was advised to stop playing it safe by American great Martina Navratilova, but early in the opening match of the 2023 WTA Finals, it seemed that she did not listen.
Of course, both players had to get used to the conditions in Cancun, but Rybakina seemingly adapted better, when she managed to break her opponent's serve in the eighth game of the first set, taking a 5-3 lead.
But that didn't last for too long as Pegula raised her level, and she never looked back. The American won four consecutive games at the end of the first set to completely turn it around and win it 7-5.
On top of that, the second highest-ranked American in the WTA Rankings started the second set with a break too, and so early in the set she was up by a break, leading 2-0.
Pegula then added one more break to jump into a 4-1 lead, but that's when Rybakina showed the last signs of some resistance, recovering one of the breaks and decreasing the deficit to 2-4.
Yet, that wasn't enough as Pegula broke yet again and finished the match off with a string of six consecutive points to win the match 7-5, 6-2, and secure her first victory at the 2023 WTA Finals.
Unlike other tournaments, this win doesn't mean that she'll advance, as she needs to do well also in her matches against Aryna Sabalenka and Maria Sakkari, but a two-set win is very valuable at the WTA Finals, and it also earned the American additional 125 ranking points.