World No. 1 and US Open champion Iga Swiatek speaks to CNN as she celebrates her first big WTA title on the courts of Key Biscayne, Florida, and in the first of a series of interviews with top athletes and coaches.
The No. 5 seed and top seed in the WTA event said the win Sunday was no fluke, that the game plan prepared for her was very sound.
“I was prepared, we did everything,” she said of her week of preparation, which in addition to tennis included a night on the town with her husband, a trip to the WNBA’s game in Dallas on Monday and an appearance on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” Monday.
Swiatek beat Russian Svetlana Kuznetsova in the Wimbledon final and now has a two-year WTA tour title to defend.
The WTA Tour of Miami, where two-time Wimbledon finalist Serena Williams won for a second straight year, is the first real test in the U.S. in the open era of women’s tennis.
“The main thing is that we have to do the same thing and win,” Swiatek said. “We have to be consistent. I think we played well the other day. We played the game plan and our game plan is the same. We have to play the same game plan every week.”
Swiatek, though, did not hesitate to criticize her opponent for her slow first service game and for playing the ball poorly. She lost 4-6, 3-6 in the first set in one hour and 29 minutes but quickly recovered in the second and won easily in the third. Kuznetsova twice served for the set in the first hour.
Swiatek will now play another top-10 player for a third straight year in the French Open, either in the quarterfinals or semifinal, depending on results to date in the men’s competition or other events like the Australian Open, where the top seed and top seed are seeded.
“I think it’s very important to play the right opposition, and I think it’s very important for the top players to travel with their coaches,” Swiatek said. “I think we have an opportunity to grow our game a lot. I know we can do better, but I think it’s very important to