Iga Swiatek vs Elena Rybakina Indian Wells 2023 SF Preview and Prediction


Indian Wells is down to four women left with the draw not really throwing up any massively surprising participants. Last year’s finalist Iga Swiatek is still in the picture but will have her toughest match yet against Elena Rybakina on Friday evening. It was the Kazakh who was a shock winner in their Australian Open meeting this year, being one of the rare few to stop Swiatek from winning at least one set over the last year.

It has been another deep run without dropping a set for Swiatek this fortnight with only Bianca Andreescu giving her much of a fright. She broke five times in her quarter final against Sorana Cirstea, with only a few sloppy service games making the 6-3 6-2 win look a little closer.

Meanwhile, Rybakina will need all the rest she can get following a classic with Karolina Muchova. The Czech had been playing well above her ranking of 76 throughout, but did falter in the deciding set. Rybakina took advantage of a gifted break on a double fault, holding on for the rest of the match to secure a 7-6 2-6 6-4 win. “It was very tough today,” Rybakina said on court afterwards. “I didn’t start that well. I was a bit slower than usual. Karolina, she played really well. And then in important moments, I played well.”

Despite her win just two months ago, Rybakina is not getting carried away about her chances. “If it’s going to be a bit of a drop like today, maybe in the second set when it was very quick, first three games of the second set, then of course the chances are less just because she’s No.1 and she’s very consistent. So there is not many margin to mistakes, I will say.” she said.

Swiatek looks comfortable on these slow hard courts and should be able to make enough tweaks to her game to limit the rewards that come from Rybakina’s aggressive tactics. She should be able to grind the Kazakh down but will need to start well on return, limiting freebies for one of the best servers on the tour.

Prediction – Iga Swiatek in straight sets

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