Iga Swiatek - Indian Wells 2023

Iga Swiatek supports Elena Rybakina’s claims about ‘unprofessional’ WTA

Iga Swiatek has commented on the situation that unfolded in Montreal last week, in which her fellow top five player Elena Rybakina labelled the WTA’s leadership as ‘weak’.

Swiatek was beaten at the semi-final stage by eventual champion Jessica Pegula, in a match that was unaffected by rain delays.

However, the second semi-final between Rybakina and Liudmila Samsonova was postponed until the same day as the final.

Samsonova beat an exhausted Rybakina, who had previously played a 3 hour 30 minute quarter-final that finished at 3am, and left a very quick and underwhelming final contest between Pegula and the Russian.

Iga Swiatek was asked about the situation, “For sure, weather is something we can’t really predict, but maybe we should focus more on what is healthy for players because we have to compete every week.

“The tour is so intense with travel and not actually having two days of calm and not working that it would be nice in the future to focus on players, especially next year when there will be more and more mandatory tournaments and longer tournaments.”

Although the Pole was not as affected in Montreal, she revealed that scheduling had caused her issues in the past, “In Rome, I already told you guys the scheduling is crazy. But then during the clay season in Rome and Madrid I played four matches close to midnight or after midnight I finished them. It wasn’t as obvious as Elena’s situation last week.”

The WTA No.1 continued, “I understand we have to adjust to broadcasters and everything, but I also asked the WTA for some data to see if people are watching matches that start past 10pm. I didn’t get anything, but it would be easier to actually understand that it makes sense to play that late.”

Swiatek is not the only player to comment on this situation, with 2017 US Open champion Sloane Stephens also requesting a ‘solution’ to prevent this happening in the future.

“It is clear that the circuit has to do a better job regarding the order of play in a tournament,” claimed Stephens. “We have to find a solution regarding night matches, it is unfair for the tennis players not to play at the same time. There are many things that should be established on this issue. We must do better, for all our players.”

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Matthew Johns, Tennishead Writer, is a professional tennis journalist with a specialist degree in Sports Journalism. He's a keen tennis player having represented his local club and University plus he's also a qualified tennis coach. Matthew has a deep knowledge of tennis especially the ATP Tour and thrives on breaking big tennis news stories for Tennishead.