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By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Sunday October 16, 2022

 
Iga Swiatek

Iga Swiatek powered past Donna Vekic to claim her 8th title of 2022 - and the 11th of her career.

Photo Source: TC

Sundays are fun days for World No.1 Iga Swiatek: the recurring theme of the WTA Tour in 2022 has held true for another week.

The Pole is in pole position in the rankings and against anybody she faces.

Tennis Express

On Sunday Swiatek's latest victim was qualifier Donna Vekic, who fought valiantly to reach her first final of the year in San Diego, hurdling past two top-10 talents and polishing off American Danielle Collins in the completion of a semifinal that was held over due to rain on Saturday evening.

Vekic, who entered the week at 77 in the world, had enough energy to fight past Swiatek in the second set on Sunday, but she could not stay with the world-beating Pole in the decider as Swiatek won 23 of 28 points to close out the 6-3, 3-6, 6-0 triumph.

The 21-year-old, who improves to 64-8 on the season with eight titles, says she just needed to loosen up and play free in the final set.

“I wanted to give it all-in, and knowing how Donna can serve I just wanted to more loosened up on my return games, and just not think – use my intuition a little bit and just fight for every ball,” Swiatek said.


Make that 21 6-0 sets won by the World No.1 this year - most since Serena Williams handed out 25 bagels to unsuspecting competitors in 2013.

Swiatek has been dominant in all facets in 2022. Even when the pressure is on and she becomes engrossed in a tight tussle. She won three deciders in San Diego to improve her three-set record to 16-4 in 2022 – a sign that she is superior both mentally and physically than her closest competition.

“It was a really tight match and pretty long, I think both of us felt the intensity for sure, so at the end I wanted to really be the one who is going to play the last ball in,” she said. “It happened a few times, so it gave me a little confidence.”

Swiatek’s 11th career title featured wins over China’s Zheng Qinwen, Americans Coco Gauff and Jessica Pegula, as well as Vekic.


Vekic, who has battled to find peak fitness after a knee injury and subsequent surgery in 2021, defeated Maria Sakkari, Karolina Pliskova, Aryna Sabalenka and Danielle Collins, all after reaching the main draw through qualifying.

She will climb 30 spots in Monday’s ATP rankings, back inside the Top-50 to No.47.

Swiatek will take the next two weeks off before taking her place in the WTA Finals at Fort Worth, which begin on October 31.


 

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