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Swiatek Claims Third Italian Open Title with Dominant Display Against Sabalenka



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Iga Swiatek clinched her third Italian Open title in Rome with a commanding performance over Aryna Sabalenka, solidifying her status as a formidable force as the French Open looms closer. Swiatek, currently ranked world No. 1, displayed exceptional form throughout the tournament at the prestigious Foro Italico, where she triumphed in straight sets without dropping a single set en route to victory.

Swiatek’s win extends her remarkable tour winning streak to 12 consecutive matches and sets the stage for a potential fourth French Open title. The Polish star, at just 22 years old, is poised to make a significant impact in Paris, aiming for a third consecutive Roland Garros title and an overall fourth Grand Slam title in her career.

The final showdown between Swiatek and Sabalenka marked a stark contrast from their recent encounter in Madrid, where Swiatek had to fend off three match points before emerging victorious in a thrilling tiebreaker. However, in Rome, Swiatek exerted relentless pressure from the outset, leading Sabalenka to a moment of frustration as the Belarusian smashed her racket in the fourth game.

Despite moments of resilience from Sabalenka, Swiatek’s exceptional footwork and precision allowed her to dictate play and force her opponent into uncharacteristic errors. Sabalenka, ranked No. 2 in the world, struggled to match Swiatek’s agility and accuracy, eventually succumbing to the Polish player’s superior court craft.

While Sabalenka briefly challenged Swiatek at the start of the second set, the top-ranked player thwarted seven break points in her first two service games, showcasing her composure under pressure. With a relatively low count of unforced errors and a clinical display of shot-making, Swiatek sealed the victory with a backhand return winner on her second match point.

Swiatek’s dominance in Rome adds another accolade to her impressive career record, now standing at 20-2 in the Italian capital. Her success places her in contention to rival the record of five Italian Open titles held by the legendary Chris Evert. Additionally, Swiatek’s idol and tennis great, Rafael Nadal, remains the overall record-holder with an astounding 10 Rome trophies to his name.

Looking ahead, the men’s final in Rome features a clash between 2017 champion Alexander Zverev and the 24th-ranked Nicolas Jarry, promising another compelling showdown on the courts. As Swiatek continues her reign of dominance and her rivalry with Sabalenka, the tennis world eagerly anticipates their next chapter at the French Open, where the stakes will be even higher.

Rachel Adams

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