Iga Swiatek was knocked out of the Australian Open by Elena Rybakina, former Wimbledon champion, and her remarks at the press conference have sparked positive feedback.
The World No. 1 was honest about what was going through her mind during the match: “I felt the pressure, and I felt that I don’t want to lose instead of I want to win. So that’s I think, a base of what I should focus on in the next couple of weeks.”
"I felt that I don’t want to lose instead of I want to win": Swiatek admits pressure of World Number One tag got to her in Rybakina defeat
Seven-time Grand Slam champion Mats Wilander compared it to Naomi Osaka's honesty in recent years regarding her mental health:
“Naomi Osaka was applauded for coming out (about her mental health) and she won four majors. She came out after the fourth Grand Slam and said she has mental health issues and that was applauded in every was. But we never really knew whu, was it the pressure or (something else).”
“Sometimes you play to not lose and sometimes you play to win, it’s just the way it is. We have to forget about Roger Federer, Rafa Nadal, Novak Djokovic, Serena Williams. These people are superhuman.”, said the Swede.
“Iga Swiatek is not there yet, but I think she’s on the right path, it’s a healthy outlook and she’s being honest and can talk about it.”
Rybakina knocks out World Number One Swiatek and advances to the quarterfinals at Australian Open
There were other experts who spoke about Swiatek's sincerity, such as journalist Laura Robson: “That is such a huge thing for players to speak about,”. Además agregó que “To have someone come out and say she was playing with this fear in her head, makes such a difference... she can work on that and hopefully we won’t see that so much in the future from her.”
The Eurosport journalist Tim Henmann also agreed with Wilander and Robson: “she travels with a psychologist and the reality is you’ve got to think about the process.”
“If you can get your mind to think about her great serve and forehand and how you want to play, then you’re not going to be thinking about the outcome.”
For the moment, the Polish will not see the first position of the WTA threatened, since she has more than double the points of Ons Jabeur, number 2 in the world.
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