Iga Swiatek revealed that she had some doubts after replacing Ashleigh Barty in the top spot. Barty, a three-time Grand Slam champion, announced in March a surprise retirement from tennis at the age of 25. At the time of her retirement, Barty was the highest ranked player in the world and had just won the Australian Open.
After Barty withdrew, she requested that her name be removed from the WTA ranking list, as Swiatek replaced the Aussie in the top spot. In the remainder of 2022, Swiatek enjoyed a lot of success, most notably winning two Grand Slams.
Swiatek on Barty: She set the bar high
«At first I felt like I wasn’t sure if this was my place to be. Ash, she seemed like a great role model for everyone in terms of her behavior on the court but off the court as well, so I felt like she really settled. «. the bar pretty high.
I need to show it to people, but also to myself that I am in the right place. I am super proud of myself. I feel enormous satisfaction, because I have been working all my life to get to this point. I really don’t think it’s possible for me.
Even at this moment I feel there is a lot I can change and improve,» Swiatek was quoted as saying by Eurosport. In a recent interview, Swiatek admitted that he was trying to figure out how to beat Barty before the Australian announced a shock retirement.
On the clay courts of Rome in 2021, Barty defeated Swiatek. In the 2022 Adelaide International semi-final, Barty again beat Swiatek. But now that Barty is retired, Swiatek has established herself as the face of women’s tennis.
On the court, Swiatek is achieving great results. Off the pitch, Swiatek is a perfect role model for kids around the world. In general, Swiatek is doing all the right things.