Iga SWIATEK cruises to victory in Madrid Open debut against WANG Xiyu

Thursday, 25 April 2024 at 20:44
Iga Swiatek made a successful debut at the Madrid Open by defeating Wang Xiyu 6-1, 6-2 to advance to the round of 32. The Polish player is the top favorite to clinch the trophy and is defending her final appearance from last year, where she fell to Aryna Sabalenka.
The first set was all Swiatek's as she secured two early consecutive breaks and took a commanding 4-0 lead. Wang struggled to maintain long rallies, often committing unforced errors after a few shots, while Swiatek remained solid from the baseline without taking too many risks.
Wang managed to win only one service point before the 4-times Grand Slam champion closed out the set 6-1 with three breaks in her favor. The Chinese player had a 76% first-serve percentage but only won 26% of those points against Swiatek's strong return game. The Polish player won 60% of return points and 67% of service points in a set that lasted 32 minutes.
The second set began again in favor of Swiatek, who won the first 11 points consecutively and surged ahead 3-0. It seemed that the left-handed player would have no chance, as she appeared uncomfortable with the surface for much of the match. However, Wang fought back, and when the score was 1-4, she managed to win three consecutive games, securing her first break and leveling the score 4-4.
Since 2022, Iga Swiatek has notched up her 150th victory in WTA events, leading the pack ahead of Elena Rybakina and Coco Gauff, who follow closely with 108 wins each
Although Wang significantly improved her level for much of the second set, it wasn't enough to stay in the match. Swiatek recovered from the three consecutive games against her and ultimately secured a final break to seal the victory 6-1, 6-4 and advance to the third round of the tournament.
Wang's unforced errors, including two consecutive double faults in the final game, proved costly, giving her opponent match point and then the victory. In the third round, Swiatek will face the 27th seed Sorana Cirstea (No. 30), who defeated the 18-year-old teenager Alexandra Eala (No. 170) 6-3, 6-7(6), 6-4.

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