Phenomenal Ostapenko claims victory over Swiatek, ends US Open reign as champion and World No. 1

Monday, 04 September 2023 at 10:22
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The defending champion, Iga Swiatek, fell to Jelena Ostapenko in her title defense by 3-6, 6-3, 6-1 and will lose the world No. 1 ranking to Aryna Sabalenka.
Ostapenko had a 3-0 head-to-head advantage over Swiatek, although all these encounters occurred before Swiatek reached the world No. 1 ranking. Swiatek came into the tournament with confidence after dominant victories over Rebecca Peterson (6-0, 6-1), Daria Gavrilova (6-3, 6-4), and Kaja Juvan (6-0, 6-1).
World No. 21 Ostapenko reached the fourth round of the US Open for the first time in her career and did so while meeting expectations with earlier round victories over Jasmine Paolini, Elina Avanesian, and Bernarda Pera, all in three sets.
The first set started with the world No. 1 losing her serve immediately but managing to break back in the next game to level the match. With the score at 3-2 in her favor, she secured another break and maintained the lead on her serve to take the set 6-3.
The Latvian player played aggressively, attacking both the first and second serves, attempting winners, and managing to hit 12 of them. However, she also made 9 unforced errors, which cost her dearly in crucial moments. Swiatek, on the other hand, capitalized on her opponent's second serves, winning 78% of those points.
In the second set, Ostapenko continued with her strategy and was the first to break to lead 3-0. Solid defense from Swiatek and two double faults from Ostapenko gifted a break to the 4-time Grand Slam champion, attempting to level the match.
Nevertheless, Ostapenko reclaimed the break in the following game and eventually secured the set 6-3 with her service.
The third set turned into a nightmare for the Polish player, who struggled to counter Ostapenko's aggressive shots. The Latvian player was precise in hitting deep shots and forcing errors from Swiatek, resulting in her winning three consecutive breaks.
Swiatek struggled with her service, only winning 30% of her points with the first serve and 29% with the second. Ostapenko comfortably claimed the set 6-1.
Swiatek's defeat means she will lose the world No. 1 ranking after holding it for 74 consecutive weeks, with Aryna Sabalenka taking over. This loss also ends her streak of 10 consecutive wins at Flushing Meadows.
Moreover, this is Swiateks first loss of a match in a WTA 2023 event after winning the first set. The score after this dramatic match is now 50 wins in favour of the the Polish athlete and.. 1 loss! Unfortunately for Swiatek, it had to happen in this US Open grand slam against a player she has never won against (4 losses). Jelena Ostapenko truely is her Nemesis..

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