Former World No.2 Krejcikova grabbed her first singles title of the year, and sixth of her career, with the 91-minute stunner of top seed Swiatek.
Dubai: It was an evening to remember for Barbora Krejcikova in Dubai as she went onto to clinch her first ever WTA 1000 title of her career. She beat World No.1 Iga Swiatek in the Dubai Tennis Championships women’s singles final in straight sets. The former World No 2 beat Swiatek 6-4, 6-2.
Not only did Krejcikova bag her first title of the year, but also the sixth of her career, with the 91-minute stunner against top seed Swiatek.
Saturday’s win marked Krejcikova’s fourth victory over a Top 10 player this week. That feat began in the second round, where the Czech had to save four match points against World No.8 Daria Kasatkina.
Following that escape, Krejcikova closed out the tournament by defeating the top three players in the WTA rankings in succession: No.3 Jessica Pegula in the quarterfinals, No.2 Aryna Sabalenka in the semifinals, and World No.1 Swiatek in the final.
After losing their first two meetings, Krejcikova has had Swiatek’s number in their last two encounters, both coming in finals. Krejcikova pulled off a gripping victory in last year’s 3-hour and 16-minute Ostrava final, and she needed less than half that time to topple Swiatek again.
Since finishing runner-up to Garbine Muguruza at this very event two years ago, Krejcikova has won six of her last seven WTA singles finals, including a Grand Slam title at 2021 Roland Garros. Her only lost final during this timeframe was to Paula Badosa at 2022 Sydney.
Krejcikova executed a commanding display in the final, handing Swiatek her first loss in the Pole’s six career WTA 1000 finals. Along with firing six aces, Krejcikova won 13 of Swiatek’s 17 second-service points (76.5 percent), leading to five service breaks.
Swiatek twice came back from a break down during a back-and-forth first set, but Krejcikova took charge for good by earning a love break for 5-4, punctuated by a backhand crosscourt winner. A love hold gave Krejcikova the last eight points of the opening frame.
Another winning crosscourt backhand gave Krejcikova the first break of the second set as well, and she broke again for 5-2 after a rally on break point ended with an outrageous lob plumb on the baseline:
After that, Krejcikova served out the match with ease to notch another upset in Dubai.
Following her latest exploits, Krejcikova is projected to ascend from World No.30 to World No.16 in Monday’s updated singles rankings.
(With IANS inputs)