WTA Rome: Iga Swiatek crushes Aryna Sabalenka (6-2, 6-1) and will play for a 5th consecutive title against Ons Jabeur

She forgot what losing meant. World number 1 and defending champion Iga Swiatek qualified for the WTA 1000 final in Rome on Saturday to try to win her fifth consecutive tournament after successes in Doha, Indian Wells, Miami and Stuttgart.

The 20-year-old Polish, big favorite of Roland-Garros (May 22-June 5), signed her 27th victory in a row, a performance that no one had achieved since Serena Williams in 2015, by atomizing Belarusian Aryna Sabalenka, head of series N.3, in two expeditious sets 6-2, 6-1 and 1h19 of play, on the clay court of Foro Italico.

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The 2020 Roland-Garros winner will meet Tunisia’s Ons Jabeur (7th) in the final, victorious last week in the Madrid tournament in the absence of Swiatek, and winner of her duel against Daria Kasatkina after a hung match in three sets (6-4, 1-6, 7-5). At the end of the decisive round, the Tunisian saved a match point.

Henin and the Williams sisters in focus

As in the Stuttgart final, the fourth tournament to date swept by Swiatek at the end of April, the Pole left no hope to the Belarusian, totally out of step, demoralized by the accuracy of her opponent and physically diminished at the end of the match. In Rome, the Pole returns after a short break to offer herself “five or six days without the racket” and rest a sore arm. She has been flying over her subject since the start of the week with four wins without leaving a single set.

Since 2000, only Venus Williams (35, the record), Serena Williams (34) and Justine Henin (32) have done better than the 27 victories in a row obtained so far by the Pole. Swiatek’s last defeat dates back to February 16, in the second round of the Dubai tournament, against Latvian Jelena Ostapenko.

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