The incredible race of the new number one in tennis: who stops Iga Swiatek?

Iga Swiatek rushes from victory to victory. The 20-year-old is not only hard to beat at the moment, but has also been number one in the world for a few weeks. Despite her young age, her statistics read historically.

The internet can be a fun place. Also and especially when dealing with the world of sports. There is hardly a football, soccer or tennis match without a user humorously trying out a specific, filmed game situation – and sharing it on social networks.

In the case of tennis player Iga Swiatek, the internet is packed with funny memes, GIFs or funny anecdotes. The Twitter account “Out of Context Iga Swiatek” deals exclusively with the Polish clay court specialist and is able to bring a smile to the faces of his followers more often than ever these days.

Swiatek undefeated for more than two months

The reason is simple: Iga Swiatek is currently Ms. Invincible. The Pole has not lost a match since February 16. For weeks, she has rushed from victory to victory, winning three Masters tournaments in a row and thus becoming number one in the tennis world, almost unnoticed by the German public.

The only 20-year-old topspin specialist also benefited from former world number one Ashleigh Barty retiring in mid-March. Nevertheless, Swiatek’s winning streak is remarkable. They have 22 successfully completed matches in a row. Such a series was achieved by a player her age, most recently Williams sisters Venus (35 wins) and Serena (21).

Iga Swiatek: The Pole celebrates after its quarter-final victory over the British Emma Raducanu. (Source: Paul Zimmer / images)

If you ask Barty, she could hardly have wished for a better player than her successor at the top. “She’s an incredible person, an amazing tennis player. The way she recently brought this fresh, fearless energy onto the pitch was incredible,” the Australian said in an interview with the WTA.

But who is the best woman who arouses sensation on tennis courts around the world?

Her surprising success at the French Open 2020, which was postponed to September due to the pandemic, aroused her first big astonishment. As a 19-year-old, she snatched the title without losing a set – and on the way there, she dismantled multiple Grand Slam winner Simona Halep in the round of 16 with 6: 1, 6: 2.

Iga Swiatek: After winning the final of the French Open 2020 over Sofia Kenin, the Pole poses with his trophy on the Philippe Chatrier course.  (Source: imago images / IP3press)Iga Swiatek: After winning the final of the French Open 2020 over Sofia Kenin, the Pole poses with his trophy on the Philippe Chatrier course. (Source: IP3press / imago images)

She became a superstar in her native Poland. Understandably, as the first Polish Grand Slam winner ever. But the list of young women who have sensationally become Grand Slam winners as teenagers in recent years is long – and not necessarily a promise of lasting success. About Jelena Ostapenko, Bianca Andreescu or most recently Emma Raducanu – they have all so far failed to prove consistency. Or, in the case of Brit Raducanu, do it first.

Not so Swiatek. Although she also experienced a weakness phase that is normal for her age, she was the only player on the tour to reach the quarterfinals of a Grand Slam final since her triumph in Paris. A consequence that only Barty brought to the pitch in the final form.

Wiktorowski replaced Sierzputowski

In addition, her newfound comeback quality. In Indian Wells, she turned a set deficit three times into a win. Even in the semi-final in Stuttgart, she did not let the lost tie-break against Lyudmila Samsonova overwhelm her. A trait she had lacked under her former, longtime coach Piotr Sierzputowski.

Tomasz Wiktorowski has been in charge of the Warsaw player since the start of this season. The sour contemporaries who once also led Agnieszka Radwanska to the top of the world. Under him, Swiatek again perfected their powerful, aggressive game. The passionate clay court player currently appears to be flying over the pitch.

The latest results underline Swiatek’s fantastic form. Before their matches, fans amuse with amusement whether there is a bagel (seen victory to zero) or a baguette (seen victory to one) to admire on the field.

At the final of the Porsche Cup in Stuttgart, Swiatek meets Aryna Sabalenka. The fourth place in the world rankings is together with Paula Badosa from Spain (third place) and Czech Barbora Krejčíková (second place) also one of her closest competitors for the place in the sun.

As of today, however, it does not seem to be the case that the huge success of being number one in the world at such a young age can cause problems for Swiatek. And the fact that the upcoming tournaments are being held on their favorite pads should inspire Swiatek even more.

It is uncertain who can stop their progress. The only thing that is certain is that she can claim to have broken the “invincible”. Maybe already on Sunday in Stuttgart.

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