Iga Swiatek to play against ‘nightmare matchup’ Elena Rybakina for title



© Getty Images Sport – Clive Brunskill

Defending champion Iga Swiatek and No. 3 seed Elena Rybakina are set to square off in the first WTA 1000 final of the year after sealing final spots on Friday. 

Swiatek, the No. 1 seed in Doha, was scheduled to take on former world No. 1 Karolina Pliskova in the Doha semifinal. But Pliskova – who won five matches in Cluj-Napoca last week before also winning her opening four matches in Doha this week – withdrew from the Swiatek match due to a lower-back injury.

Iga Swiatek© Getty Images Sport – Clive Brunskill

 

After the news of the Pliskova withdrawal was announced, Rybakina took to the court to take on Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova. Rybakina, ranked at No. 4 in the world, routinely handled the business against Pavlyuchenkova, beating the Russian 6-2 6-4.

Rybakina destroys Pavlyuchenkova to set up a Swiatek final in Doha

Through the opening four games of the match, not a single break point was seen. Then, Rybakina put it in another gear as the third-seeded Kazakh claimed back-to-back breaks in the fifth and seventh games en route to winning the next four games and sealing the first set in style. 

After winning the last five games of the first set, Rybakina also broke Pavlyuchenkova in the first game of the second set and served out the following game for a 2-0 lead in the set. In the fourth game, Pavlyuchenkova put major pressure on Rybakina but the Kazakh managed to save six break points before opening a 3-1 lead. 

After preventing Pavlyuchenkova from getting the break back, Rybakina broke the Russian again in the fifth game to go up by a double break before also serving out the following game for a 5-1 lead.

Down by a set and a double break, Pavlyuchenkova refused to quit, winning the next three games. In the 10th game, Pavlyuchenkova had a break point to completely get back into the set but Rybakina managed to save it before realizing her second match point to seal a two-set win.

Elena Rybakina
Elena Rybakina© Getty Images Sport – Clive Brunskill

 

Rybakina has won the last three meetings against Swiatek

When Swiatek, 22, and 24-year-old Rybakina meet in the Doha final, it will be their fifth meeting. Going into the match, Rybakina owns a 3-1 head-to-head against Swiatek.

In the first meeting between the two in 2021 Ostrava, Swiatek beat Rybakina in two sets. Since then, Rybakina has clinched three straight wins over Swiatek, overcoming the Pole last year at the Australian Open, Indian Wells and Rome. At the Australian Open and Indian Wells, Rybakina beat Swiatek in straight sets while she won their Rome meeting after the Pole retired in the third set due to injury.

Elena Rybakina and Iga Swiatek
Elena Rybakina and Iga Swiatek© Getty Images Sport – Julian Finney

 

Rybakina is certainly a very tough matchup for Swiatek and it will be interesting to see if the top-seeded Pole can end her three-match losing streak against the Kazakh and win her third consecutive Doha title.



Source link: https://www.tennisworldusa.org/tennis/news/On_the_WTA_results_with/142697/doha-iga-swiatek-to-play-against-nightmare-matchup-elena-rybakina-for-title-/

Sponsors

spot_img

Latest

What to know ahead of Biden’s speech

Since the speech is delivered during a joint session of Congress, all members of the House and Senate are invited – though not...

Hugo Lloris injury blow for Tottenham, Manchester United £6billion Qatari interest, Leeds eye Rayo Vallecano boss, Man City charges latest, Billy Sharp sparks Sheffield...

talkSPORT.com has you covered with all the latest Premier League news, gossip and views in our dedicated football live blog. The fall-out continues from...

Etzebeth on Springboks Joining the Six Nations

Springbok hardman Eben Etzebeth is on board with the idea of South Africa joining the Six Nations, so long as the international...

Martina Navratilova announces she got ‘all-clear’ six months after cancer diagnosis

Martina Navratilova announces she got 'all-clear' six months after cancer diagnosis (Provided by Tennis World USA) Former 18-time Grand Slam champion Martina Navratilova has...

Dan Carter mentoring NRL champions ahead of Super League clash

The Penrith Panthers yet again emerged as the premier team in the National Rugby League in 2022 and look to extend their...