Swiatek: ‘If I Concentrate On My Game, Everything Is Possible’

Iga Swiatek (photo: Porsche Tennis Grand Prix)

STUTTGART/WASHINGTON, April 25, 2022 (by Michael Dickens)

With her fourth consecutive WTA Tour title garnered and 23rd straight victory secured at the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix in Stuttgart Sunday afternoon, Iga Swiatek‘s first tournament as World No. 1 was by all indications a big success.

The 20-year-old Polish star dominated her WTA 500 title match on indoor red clay against World No. 4 Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus, winning 6-2, 6-2 in a tidy and efficient one hour and 24 minutes. She delighted the sellout crowd that filled Center Court inside Porsche Arena with her 30th victory of the season in her 33rd match. It was Swiatek’s debut in the 45th edition of the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix and it paid off nicely with her winning her seventh career crown. Now, Swiatek has won seven straight finals that she’s competed in and hasn’t dropped a set in any of the title matches – and no more than five games in each of those championship matches.

Along with her first-place prize money of 93,823 euros and 470 WTA rankings points, Swiatek walked off with a brand-new red Porsche Taycan GTS Sport Turismo automobile, which she got to take for a quick, gentle spin during the trophy ceremony. She hopped into the sleek sports car that was propped up in its familiar display space elevated behind the baseline and guided in down onto the court. It made for great visuals for everyone to enjoy.

During press following her victory and the trophy presentation, Swiatek called being included among the list of distinguished players who have the longest winning streaks in women’s tennis since 2000 “pretty surreal.” She added: “A few year ago, I wouldn’t even think about being in this kind of group.

“For sure, right now, I need to work harder to keep this streak, but I’m just going to take it match by match, and I’m super proud of myself and really satisfied. These are the kind of players who were role models when I was growing up.”

Looking back on her championship week on clay, Swiatek said she “worked hard this week to adjust properly” and to play her “best tennis” on the surface.

“I’m pretty proud of myself and pretty proud of my team because after yesterday’s match [against Liudmila Samsonova in the semifinals], it wasn’t easy to reset physically and mentally and be ready for today.”

Swiatek added: “The title means so much to me because the week has shown me that I can also win tournaments even if my preparation is quite perfect or if I don’t have too much time to get used to a new surface. If I concentrate on my game, then everything is possible.”

First doubles crown as a team for Krawczyk and Schuurs

When No. 2 seeds Desirae Krawczyk of the United States and Demi Schuurs of the Netherlands wrapped up the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix doubles title with their 6-3, 6-4 victory over No. 1 seeds Coco Gauff of the United States and Zhang Shuai of China, it was their first as a team. They formed their on-court partnership early last month at Indian Wells and have gone on to win six of their nine matches together.

The title victory marked the 15th career doubles title for Schuurs and seventh for Krawczyk.

“I think we’re both really happy with the improvements we’ve had the past few weeks,” Krawczyk said after securing the Stuttgart title. “I think we’re just really thrilled, and we’re hoping to keep it going in the next few tournaments.”

Added Schuurs: “Today, I think we stepped on court and we said, ‘OK, we want to enjoy and we’re gonna go for it.’ … I’m happy that we won this title. So, at least, it’s something that we know is in us, and we can do it every week.”

Huber very pleased with tournament week

It’s said that the crowd makes the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix what it is and on Sunday afternoon, a capacity crowd of 4,400 filled Porsche Arena to watch World No. 1 Iga Swiatek win her fourth straight WTA title and first in Stuttgart.

At the traditional closing press conference before the singles final, Anke Huber, the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix Operating Tournament Director gave praise and credit.

“For us organizers, it was a highly emotional moment when the gates opened and the first spectators entered the arena. Finally, being able to experience the atmosphere on Center Court was something very special for us and proved that we had done a few things right,” Huber said.

Looking back, Huber was also highly positive at how the tournament draw turned out. “We couldn’t have come up with a better field. For instance, we had five Top 10 players in the quarterfinals. And the tournament itself was extremely exciting all the way through. A total of 12 matches went to three sets, two even lasted longer than three hours,” she said.

“One can therefore see just how tight everything is at the moment in women’s tennis. For me, it was a fantastic tournament. I had immense fun watching the matches.”

Aces for Charity raises 30,000 euros for a good cause

The Aces for Charity, which took place during the 45th Porsche Tennis Grand Prix was a success. It’s been a fixture at the Stuttgart tournament for many years.

This year, for every ace that was struck during the main draw, Porsche donated 100 euros to worthy causes. A total of 217 aces were served through the semifinal round. Porsche rounded up the sum to 30,000 euros, which was split up equally between the tournament’s charity partners, the “Stiftung Agapedia” foundation and the “Landessportverband Baden-Württemberg” regional sports organization.

Checks were presented by Porsche during a pre-finals ceremony. The money will go to projects for refugees from Ukraine. During the tournament Aryna Sabalenka hit 25 aces.

By the numbers

“Quotable …”

“I was so consistent and I needed to be after yesterday’s exhausting match. I was pretty tired, which is why i had to stay focused and try to expend as little energy as possible. It worked out well, also thanks to the magnificent atmosphere in the arena. I now know why all the players on Tour say this tournament is one of the best.”

– World No. 1 and top seed Iga Swiatek, after winning the 2022 Porsche Tennis Grand Prix singles title.