Sat, 30 Sep 2023

No. 1 Iga Swiatek returns to French Open semifinals

Field Level Media
08 Jun 2023, 02:40 GMT+10

Top-seeded Iga Swiatek defeated No. 6 Coco Gauff 6-4, 6-2 on Wednesday to reach the French Open semifinals for the third time in four years.

The 22-year-old two-time Roland Garros champion (2020, 2022) from Poland needed only 88 minutes to complete her quarterfinal victory.

Swiatek improved to 7-0 in her career (14-0 in sets) against Gauff, 19, including a 6-1, 6-3 victory in last year's final in Paris.

"I'm pretty happy to be in the semifinal again of Roland Garros," said Swiatek, who improved to 26-2 for her career in this Grand Slam event. "It's a great achievement no matter how the tournament is going to finish. ... I'm really happy I can show consistency and just play good here every year."

Swiatek's opponent in the semifinals will be No. 14 seed Beatriz Haddad Maia of Brazil, who rallied for a 3-6, 7-6 (5), 6-1 win against No. 7 Ons Jabeur of Tunisia earlier on Wednesday.

The other semifinalists are Karolina Muchova of the Czech Republic and No. 2 seed Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus. They won their quarterfinal matches on Tuesday and will square off on Thursday.

Swiatek exchanged early service breaks with Gauff in the opening set before winning the set with another break in the 10th game. Gauff lost her serve in the sixth and eighth games of the second set.

"It was more tight in the first set, so I'm pretty happy in those important moments I was the one that was solid and could put a little more pressure on Coco," Swiatek said.

Swiatek saved four of five break points and converted the same number of break chances. She finished with 19 winners and 15 unforced errors, compared to 13 and 23 for Gauff, respectively.

Swiatek became the first woman to win 12 consecutive main draw matches at Roland Garros since Serena Williams had a 13-match streak from 2015-16.

Haddad Maia's upset of Jabeur in two hours and 29 minutes made her the first Brazilian woman to reach the Roland Garros semifinals in the Open Era. The last Brazilian to reach the final four of a women's Grand Slam was Maria Bueno at the 1968 U.S. Open.

"I knew that it would be very hard," Haddad Maia said. "It's not easy to be a set down against Jabeur, and she was playing well. So when the match was done, I just looked to my team and said, 'We made it.'"

Haddad Maia won her only previous encounter with Swiatek in three sets in the round of 16 at Toronto in August 2022.

--Field Level Media

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