French Open champion Iga Swiatek has ‘no expectations’ for Wimbledon
Iga Swiatek says that she has “no expectations” for Wimbledon despite taking her winning streak to 35 matches by securing a second French Open title.
The world number one cruised past teenager Coco Gauff 6-1, 6-3 in Saturday’s final at Roland Garros to win her sixth successive tournament this year, including four WTA 1,000 titles and one major.
The Pole won the Indian Wells-Miami double to show her hard-court prowess, having also lifted the title in Doha, and has now dominated on clay by emerging victorious in Stuttgart, Rome and Paris.
But to extend her unbeaten run, she may have to improve her career grass-court record of four wins and four losses in main-draw matches.
“My coach (Tomasz Wiktorowski) believes I can win more matches on grass,” said Swiatek, who has reached the second week at seven consecutive Grand Slam tournaments.
“I don’t know about that yet. But I would like to add like one or two.
“But honestly, grass is always tricky. I actually like the part that I have no expectations there. It’s something kind of refreshing.”
Last year, Swiatek showed signs of improvement on the surface by reaching the Wimbledon fourth round and her coach Wiktorowski saw his former charge Agnieszka Radwanska reach her only Grand Slam final at the All England Club in 2012.
“I’m going to just prepare my best,” said Swiatek.
“Maybe with his experiences that he had with Aga Radwanska, it was her favorite surface, so maybe he’s going to give me some tips that are actually going to be really helpful, and I’m going to enjoy playing on grass a little bit more.”
Passing Serena ‘special’
She equaled Venus Williams’ run of 35 straight wins in 2000 for the longest winning streak by a woman in the 21st century.
Swiatek’s victory also took her past Serena Williams’ longest unbeaten run of 34 matches, something she says made her win even more satisfying.
“I think honestly, it may seem pretty weird, but having that 35th win and kind of doing something more than Serena did, it’s something special,” said the 21-year-old.
“Because I always wanted to… have some kind of a record. In tennis it’s pretty hard after Serena’s career.
“So that really hit me, you know. Obviously winning a Grand Slam too, but this one was pretty special because I felt like I’ve done something that nobody has ever done, and maybe it’s gonna be even more.”
Swiatek has also now won her last nine finals, with the only WTA final defeat in her career coming in a low-key event in Lugano when she was just 17.
“I try to treat it as any other match, which is pretty hard and kind of not possible, because there are always going to be like bigger amount of stress,” she added.
“I guess I’m kind of accepting that a little bit more and just, I try to lean on the strengths…
“I’m also aware that my opponents are also going to be stressed. So I try to not panic and just be less stressed than they are.”
Swiatek now boasts an impressive 21-2 win-loss record at Roland Garros, although she has a long way to go to match her idol Rafael Nadal’s 111-3.
“He had many more chances to lose, so I think his stat is much, much better,” she said of the 13-time champion, who faces Casper Ruud in Sunday’s men’s final.
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