Guadalajara, Mexico, 11 November 2021 | Leigh Rogers

Sam Stosur and Chinese partner Zhang Shuai have lost their opening match at the WTA Finals in Guadalajara.

Fourth-seeded combination Nicole Melichar-Martinez and Demi Schuurs proved too strong today, recording a 6-2 6-2 victory.

The American-Dutch team were clutch under pressure, saving nine of the 10 break points they faced in the 62-minute match.

It snaps an 11-match winning streak for the fifth-seeded Stosur and Zhang, which included their title-winning runs at Cincinnati and the US Open.

This was Stosur and Zhang’s first match together since their Grand Slam-winning run in New York and they struggled to replicate that form, committing 17 unforced errors compared to their opponent’s eight.

Stosur is a two-time champion at the prestigious season-ending championships, having captured the 2005 and 2006 titles alongside American Lisa Raymond.

The 37-year-old’s bid to win a third title is still alive, with two more round-robin matches to play this week. The top two performing teams from their group advance to the semifinals.

Aussies in action – WTA Finals

[4] Nicole Melichar-Martinez (USA)/Demi Schuurs (NED) d [5] Sam Stosur (AUS)/Zhang Shuai (CHN) 6-2 6-2

[5] Sam Stosur (AUS)
/Zhang Shuai (CHN) v [2] Shuko Aoyama (JPN)/Ena Shibahara (JPN)
[5] Sam Stosur (AUS)
/Zhang Shuai (CHN) v [7] Darija Jurak (CRO)/Andreja Klepac (SLO)