Iga Swiatek doesn’t have another epic winning streak on her mind

Iga Swiatek at the 2023 WTA Finals
Iga Swiatek celebrates at the WTA Finals

World No 1 Iga Swiatek is committed to taking things match by match after she won her seventh straight WTA Tour contest.

In 2022, Swiatek went on a 37-match unbeaten run that stretched from Doha to Wimbledon.

However, this time around Swiatek is only thinking about her next match.

Swiatek’s unblemished streak in the Middle East this year, and her perfect head-to-head against Zheng Qinwen, extended on Thursday with a 6-3, 6-2 win in the quarter-finals of the Dubai Tennis Championships.

“Honestly, I’m not thinking of winning the title because I try to do everything step by step,” Swiatek said after the win.

“All these players in the tournament are really great; any of us can win.

“I just try to stay humble and focus only on the next step.

“If, by any chance, I’m going to win the tournament, it’s just an effect of that. No point in over-analyzing!”

Swiatek met fierce resistance from No 6 seed Qinwen Zheng but it was nothing more than the WTA No 1 expected.

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“We always have tight matches,” Swiatek said on court. “It’s always intense and hard, so I’m proud of myself that I was really focused today. I just kept pushing, but she’s in great shape right now.”

Swiatek concedes that she sometimes tries to manage her intensity levels to ensure that she doesn’t punch herself out.

“It honestly depends on the day,” Swiatek said.

“You have to choose the right solutions and right tools.

“Every day, I feel more comfortable here; I’ve already played plenty of matches on this court.

“So, I feel like I’m home and I can just focus on playing.”

The top seed needed just 86 minutes to beat Zheng for a sixth straight time in their all-time head-to-head, and second time this year.

The result sees Swiatek move into the semifinals of the WTA 1000 event, and extend her winning streak in the Gulf region.

Four of Swiatek’s wins against Zheng have now come on hard courts, and she would drop just five games against the Chinese No 1 when they clashed at the United Cup last month.

Swiatek never lost serve against Zheng, saving all three break points she faced in the match.

She broke the World No 7’s serve three times to advance to a semifinal meeting with either third seed Coco Gauff or qualifier Anna Kalinskaya, who play in Thursday evening’s fourth and final quarterfinal.