French Open champion Iga Swiatek has quickly cemented her status as Ash Barty’s successor, claiming six straight titles this year.
The first women’s grand slam singles champion since the shock retirement of Ash Barty has been crowned, with Poland’s Iga Swiatek winning the French Open final on Sunday morning AEST.
Swiatek defeated American teenager Coco Gauff in straight sets on Court Philippe Chatrier to secure her second Roland Garros title.
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It was the world No. 1’s 35th successive victory, extending her lead on the WTA rankings to 4309 points ahead second-placed Anett Kontaveit.
Swiatek was crowned the world’s best women’s tennis player in March after Barty retired from the sport at just 25.
The Queensland phenom was the reigning Wimbledon and Australian Open champion, walking away from tennis at the peak of her powers.
But the search for Barty’s successor hasn’t taken long, with Swiatek quickly establishing herself as a force to be reckoned with.
Swiatek has won her last nine finals on the WTA Tour, including six straight titles in 2022 alone.
After her French Open triumph, Swiatek confessed she would have liked another opportunity to face Barty on the court.
The Aussie bettered Swiatek at this year’s Adelaide International semi-final in straight sets, with Barty also emerging victorious from their only other encounter — at Madrid in 2021.
“I was thinking about that yesterday,” Swiatek said.
“I would love to be in better shape than I was when I was playing against her and just have more variety and more abilities to win.”
Swiatek, only the 10th woman to win multiple French Open singles titles in the Open era, lost just one set in this year’s Roland Garros — against China’s Zheng Qinwen in the fourth round.
She has now won all three of her career meetings with Gauff, who was playing in her first major final.
The 21-year-old expressed her support for Ukraine during the trophy presentation, despite saying before the final that she does not feel ready to speak about off-court issues.
“I want to say to Ukraine, ‘Stay strong’. The war is still there,” she said, to cheers from the stands.
WTA Top 10
1 – Iga Swiatek
2 – Anett Kontaveit
3 – Paula Badosa
4 – Ons Jabeur
5 – Maria Sakkari
6 – Aryna Sabalenka
7 – Karolina Pliskova
8 – Danielle Collins
9 – Jessica Pegula
10 – Garbiñe Muguruza
* Correct as of 6 June, 2022