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Radwanska: Persistence Paid Off

The 2014 season has not always been smooth sailing for Agnieszka Radwanska, but the Pole has capped it by returning to the WTA Finals for a sixth time.

Agnieszka Radwanska went into the season with plenty of momentum on the back of a highly successful 2013, and she showed no sign of slowing down in January, reaching the semifinals at the Australian Open for the first time only to run out of steam against Dominika Cibulkova.

This disappointment was followed by an up-and-down spell of form in the Middle East. She clicked back into gear in spectacular fashion in Indian Wells, though, where she came through a treacherous draw, only to fall at the final hurdle, denied by an inspired Flavia Pennetta.

As has been the case in recent campaigns, the Pole never quite looked at home on the clay. Nevertheless, she did not disgrace herself at any of her French Open warm-up events, in Stuttgart, Madrid and Rome.

Despite this promising build-up to the tournament, her time in Paris ended in another tough loss, Ajla Tomljanovic tripping her up in the third round. Further setbacks were to come at Wimbledon and then Stanford, as Radwanska’s season looked in danger of petering out.

The turnaround was as sudden as it was impressive, as the 25-year-old offered a timely reminder of her considerable talents with a masterful victory over Venus Williams to lift the title in Montréal.

While she was unable to build on this success, losing to eventual semifinalist Peng Shuai at the US Open, her previous accomplishments proved more than enough to guarantee a place in Simgapore.