‘She Looked vulnerable..and Then Just Swept Everybody’ – Iga Swiatek’s Remarkable Turnaround Earns Serena Williams’ Ex-Coach’s Seal of Approval

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Seasons come and go, the 22-year-old Polish superstar continues to reign as the year-end world number 1 in women’s singles for the second time in a row. Iga Swiatek‘s supremacy was challenged by a handful of players this season. But she rose to the occasion every time she was put back to the wall. Here’s what Serena Williams‘ former coach says about the remarkable turnaround of Swiatek this season.

Iga Swiatek’s 2023 season officially began on 31 December 2022, with the start of the WTA Tour, 2023. She started the season as the 4th woman to be ranked as world number 1 for 40 or more consecutive weeks during her first stint as the top-ranked player. She wrapped up the season with a 68-11 win/loss record, 6 titles, more top 10 victories (13) than anyone on the tour. However, she struggled at the Majors this year.

Despite winning only 1 of the Grand Slam titles this year at the Roland Garros, she managed to bag nearly $10 million as prize money. Her dominance at the crucial moments didn’t let her slip too far from the battle with Aryna Sabalenka for the no.1 spot. Here’s what Rennae Stubbs said about Swiatek’s remarkable turnaround in 2023.

After having sort of a bit of a tough year, really, especially after Wimbledon through US Open swing was not good. And then you know she lost in Tokyo early, court superfast. You’re like shit, you know what’s going on here. And she looked vulnerable. She looked scared, she looked vulnerable. She looked like, anyone who can hit the ball hard could sort of put her under some pressure. And then she turned it around,‘ Rennae Stubbs.

Stubbs went on to add, ‘She won in China, in Beijing, and then won the WTA finals in Cancun and looked unbelievable. Didn’t look great in the first match. Won it down like 5-2 in the first set, and then just swept everybody after that. So I think she is by far the favorite now going into the Australian Open. But I think what she did this year was a learning experience about how to handle the pressure of what you did the year before.

After completing a stellar performance in most of the tournaments, Iga Swiatek now looks forward to the next season. She has already set her priorities for 2024.

A few days back, the world number 1 criticized the WTA heavily for the 2024 calendar. Next year is an Olympic year so the schedule is going to be quite intense. Swiatek expressed her disappointment over the scheduling of the French Open just before the Paris Olympics. Roland Garros is scheduled to take place from May 28 to June 29 next year. While Olympics is set to commence from July 26 to August 11. So there aren’t many gaps between the mega-events.

However, higher the intensity and higher the stakes for Iga Swiatek. The ‘Queen of Clay’ can now become the second player to clinch a Slam and Olympics gold medal in the same year, at the same city and same facility. Can she repeat the heroics of American Legend, Serena Williams?


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