Iga Swiatek credits US Open conditions with victory despite previous complaints

Iga Świątek US Open trophy

Iga Świątek has reflected on her first ever US Open win now that the dust has settled surrounding her historic win.

The 21-year-old became the first Polish female in history to win the title at Flushing Meadows, which is now her third Grand Slam triumph.

In an interview with Vogue, Świątek discussed her winning mindset and credited the tournament conditions in New York.

How has Świątek fared in 2022?

The world number one admitted expectations were rather high after she won her second French Open title earlier this year.

Her success at Roland-Garros was part of an impressive win streak which saw her claim six consecutive tournament titles all around the world.

Her first title of the year came in February when she won the Qatar Open. Świątek then became just the fourth woman in history to win the Sunshine Double — back-to-back Indian Wells and Miami Open finals.

The Pole then won the Stuttgart Open and the Italian Open before establishing herself as Roland-Garros champion once more.

PARIS, FRANCE – JUNE 05: Iga Swiatek of Poland, 2022 French Open Women’s Champion, poses with the Suzanne Lenglen Cup in front of the Eiffel Tower at Pont Bir-Hakeim on June 05, 2022 in Paris, France. (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)

After such an impressive streak, the stakes were incredibly high.

“I would say that my expectations were higher before the US Open swing than they were right before the tournament itself,” she admitted. “The first part of the season was so amazing for me, and I was so consistent and had this winning streak. It was very surreal, but it also created this feeling that I really had to perform at my very best in every match.

“So after Roland Garros, I needed a few tournaments to let those feelings settle down and change my attitude a bit, and I feel like I managed to do that just before the US Open, so that was perfect timing.”

PARIS, FRANCE – JUNE 04: Iga Swiatek of Poland celebrates after winning match point against Coco Gauff of The United States during the Women’s Singles final match on Day 14 of The 2022 French Open at Roland Garros on June 04, 2022 in Paris, France. (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)

Indeed, following the French Open, Świątek’s win streak came to an end when she was knocked out of the third round of Wimbledon by Alizé Cornet.

The world number one then played at a WTA 250 event in her home city of Warsaw but was unable to secure a win for her local fans.

Świątek then suffered third round exits from both the Canadian Open and the Cincinnati Open before she shifted her attention to Flushing Meadows.

For a player who had only ever found Grand Slam success on clay, stepping up to win on a new surface is quite the adjustment.

However, Świątek has continued to prove her quality by adding a hard court title to her rapidly growing trophy cabinet.

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – SEPTEMBER 10: Iga Swiatek of Poland poses with the championship trophy after defeating Ons Jabeur of Tunisia after their Women’s Singles Final match on Day Thirteen of the 2022 US Open at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 10, 2022 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

“The conditions here [at the US Open] not being my favourite helped, because I realised that I had already done so much this year, and I didn’t really have anything left to chase,” she continued.

“I won those tournaments in the first part of the season, and actually, I’m satisfied with that. That allowed me to play more freely.

“The US Open felt like the first tournament since Roland-Garros where I felt very free.”

The next Grand Slam date on the calendar will be the 2023 Australian Open. Świątek’s best finish in Melbourne saw her reach the semi-final — can she go one better in January and put her new hard court experience to the test?

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