“I wasn’t on prime of my recreation and it was actually troublesome. In tennis, anybody can beat you and I’m not stunned to see her evolve at this stage. But I hate dropping and it is pure not to surrender. Sometimes I hit arduous, however I noticed the ball come again even quicker. But I held on”perfectly summed up Iga Swiatek after her victory this Saturday over Liudmila Samsonova in the semi-finals of the Stuttgart tournament.
A victory indeed very difficult where the world number 1 was far from evolving at the level that we have known for two months. But she still lined up a 22nd victory in a row, proof that when tennis is not really there, her mind can make the difference.
In this match, Swiatek confirmed the nervousness that we saw him at the end of the quarter-final against Emma Raducanu. Faced with an opponent who often tries everything for everything while hitting the mark, it cost him the first set (a first since the 16th in Indian Wells, more than a month ago). The Pole immediately reacted to tie a set all and come away 3-1 in the last set.
But, carried by an enormous serve, Samsonova erased her two late breaks to return again in entrance 3-4. It was then the thoughts (and some small kicks like this excellent defensive forehand that grew to become a profitable drop shot) that made the distinction in favor of the world no 1. In the final, Swiatek will face Aryna Sabalenka, Paula Badosa’s scorer (7-6, 6-4).