Iga Swiatek can cap off a dream French Open run on Saturday when she takes on Sofia Kenin in the final. The Pole has been the star of this tournament, displaying some stunning offensive tennis in an impressive run in both the singles and doubles. Meanwhile, Kenin has the opportunity to make it two slams from three in a year very few would have expected.
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Swiatek has crushed her opponents all fortnight, dropping just 23 games across her six matches. That includes just three each to both former champion Simona Halep and 2019 finalist Marketa Vondrousova. She hit 23 winners in her semi final win against Nadia Podoroska, allowing the Argentinian no time to hit many of her trademark dropshots in the 6-2 6-1 win. “This is what I planned to move. I wanted to play this match as if it was a first round. I didn’t want to think about being in the semifinal because it would stress me. I just kept being aggressive, like in the previous matches. I’m feeling lucky that I’m feeling good and nothing hurts.” she said.
Kenin looks a completely different player from the one who was double bagelled by Victoria Azarenka in Rome. She had carved out a reputation for winning three setters this tournament, winning four of her first five matches in deciding sets. She held firm against the power of Petra Kvitova in the semis, taking the match 6-4 7-5. The match could have turned on it’s head after Kenin failed to serve it out at 5-4 but she broke straight broke on her way to closing out the match. “She’s such a tough player, she’s got a great aggressive game and such a big serve. I knew I had to bring my ‘A’ game in order to win,” the American said.
While Kenin does have a strong all round game, one of her most impressive assets is the mental strength and the ability to perform under pressure. This should put her in a good spot should Swiatek falter under the occasion of her first slam final. However, the Pole is in imperious form having pushed aside different types of opponent with ease throughout the tournament. Kenin will have a hard time with Swiatek whose controlled heavy hitting is going to be hard to keep up with.
Prediction – Iga Swiatek in two sets