Swiatek “doesn’t feel 100 percent physically”
Elena Rybakina has the number of Iga Swiatek in 2023.
Two wins isn’t a very large sample, but it’s clear that Rybakina has a better chance against the world No. 1 on any given day than anyone else on the WTA Tour. The Kazakh beat Swiatek 6-4, 6-4 in the fourth round of the Australian Open and obliterated her 6-2, 6-2 in the semifinals of the BNP Paribas Open on Friday.
It’s tough enough for Swiatek to withstand Rybakina’s power even when the Pole is at his full strength. On Friday, after her loss, she said she was struggling with a rib problem.
“Honestly, I feel like it’s still more about me and my mistakes,” Swiatek said when asked what Rybakina did well. “I don’t feel 100 percent physically either. I have a slight discomfort in my rib and we will be consulting with the medical team. Surely I will use these free days before Miami…. Actually, I have one more day.”
The next 1000m in Miami starts next Wednesday. Swiatek is the defending champion there, just as she was at Indian Wells after completing last year’s Sunshine Double.
But Swiatek also paid tribute to her opponent.
“Of course Elena played great tennis today and I have the feeling that I have to play better against her,” commented the top seed. “She played really well. I’m pretty sad that I lost, but then again it’s a pretty good tournament for me overall.