Martina Navratilova made her predictions for the 2024 season and placed Iga Swiatek as the world No. 1 for the third consecutive year.
The world No. 1 didn't have the dominant season of 2022 but managed to finish the year with six titles: a Grand Slam at the French Open, a WTA 1000 at the Shanghai Open, the two WTA 500 events at the Qatar Open and Stuttgart Open, as well as the WTA 250 Warsaw Open and the WTA Finals. Iga Swiatek lost the world No. 1 ranking after exiting the US Open quarterfinals and Aryna Sabalenka reached the final.
"And then she pulls an 11-0 finish out of the hat": Martina Navratilova staggered at how Iga Swiatek returned to form after US Open
Despite indications at the end of the year that Sabalenka could finish as the best player with eleven consecutive victories, seven of them against top-10 opponents, 18-times Grand Slam champion Martina Navratilova expressed in an interview with the WTA that Iga Swiatek will likely dominate the tour again in 2024 and finish the year as the world No. 1 for the third consecutive year.
“That was Iga showing that, at her best, she is better than anybody. I mean, in difficult conditions, she just blew right through everybody. She gets into the points better and knows how to close the deal. I’ll be honest … a few weeks ago, based on what I was seeing, I didn’t think she’d finish 2024 at No.1 next year -- I was picking Gauff.
“Now I think maybe Gauff will pass Sabalenka for No.2. But I don’t know if either one of them can get past Iga if she has a good offseason, stays healthy, stays fresh.”
"A very powerful support": Iga Swiatek and Stefanos Tsitsipas donate to Elina Svitolina's foundation to help Ukraine
As of now, Iga Swiatek has spent 77 weeks as the world No. 1, and she is poised to add several more weeks to her tally at the beginning of the season. This places her as the 10th tennis player with the most weeks at world No. 1 in history, surpassing other former world No. 1 players currently active, such as Caroline Wozniacki (71), Simona Halep (64), and Victoria Azarenka (51).
To climb further in the rankings, she still needs another 21 weeks to match the American Lindsay Davenport, who held the No. 1 spot for a total of 98 weeks between 1998 and 2006.