French Open final updates: Swiatek beats Paolini


On June 8, 2024 at 3:51 PM, Tom Hamilton, a writer in his senior years, shared a post on his blog.

Swiatek Dominates Roland Garros Again

In Paris, tennis stars Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova had the honor of presenting the trophy. Evert achieved victory at Roland Garros seven times, while Navratilova won the singles championship in 1982 and 1984, and also secured victory in seven women's doubles and two mixed doubles championships.

"I've had a challenging two weeks, but regardless, I feel a great sense of achievement," expressed Paolini.

It was Swiatek’s turn to speak to the crowd, but the stadium was still crowded and her voice echoed, making it difficult for her to speak. She thanked her team and family and acknowledged that playing for so many weeks was not easy. She expressed her delight at being there and how she looked forward to returning every year. However, she paused again since she found it challenging to hear her own voice. She turned to Evert for guidance and thanked her for believing in her, particularly after almost being knocked out in the second round. Finally, after pausing once more, she said she wouldn’t bore them anymore.

And that wraps up the women's singles competition for this year, with the champion being exactly who many had anticipated before the tournament even began. Swiatek has now claimed victory at Roland Garros, solidifying her place at the top.

Swiatek Seals 2024 French Open Win Against Paolini

During the first set's transition, Paolini appeared confused while Swiatek practiced her swings on the baseline. Swiatek seemed to sense victory and wanted to finish the match quickly. She effortlessly won the opening game and put pressure on Paolini's serve, earning two break points. With the crowd cheering her on, Swiatek managed to bring the game to a tie, but ultimately lost due to poor serving and a wayward forehand, leading to Swiatek taking a 2-0 lead.

It was evident that Swiatek's previous participation in Grand Slams was proving to be advantageous. Paolini, on the other hand, had not competed in a Grand Slam final prior to this event, her most successful performance being in the earlier Australian Open where she had reached the fourth round. Thus, everything was very new to Paolini, while Swiatek was more accustomed to the atmosphere and expectations of a Grand Slam final.

During this stage, Paolini had only managed to score four winning shots, whereas Swiatek had hit 12. In terms of mistakes, Paolini had committed 30 errors, in contrast to Swiatek's 17. Subsequently, Swiatek was able to hold her serve without losing any points and then went on to break Paolini's serve, taking a commanding 4-0 lead.

Iga Swiatek has a fan base called "Iga's Bakery" which is named after all the times she's won a set 6-0, referred to as "bageled" an opponent. In the French Open final against Paolini, Swiatek seemed to be adding another bagel to the list - which would be her first - as Paolini was powerless to stop her.

In the fifth game, Paolini tried to make a comeback, but unfortunately couldn't manage to get the break she needed to turn things around. With the match being less than an hour long, Swiatek was only one game away from taking the title. However, to the delight of the spectators, Paolini was able to successfully hold serve, causing Swiatek to have to serve out the final game of the match to become champion.

As Paolini lost a point by hitting a forehand too far, Swiatek immediately fell to her knees to celebrate yet another win at the French Open. It took her only 68 minutes to achieve this one. Just like Monica Seles (1990-92) and Justine Henin (2005-07), Swiatek was able to secure three consecutive French Open victories, and she seems to be keeping up her unstoppable momentum.

Swiatek Wins First Set 6-2

There is a divided fan base between Iga Swiatek and Jasmine Paolini at Roland Garros. Many Polish supporters are present in Court Philippe-Chatrier, seen waving their country's flags. However, a small group of passionate Italian supporters, sporting red, white and green t-shirts, can also be found next to the presidents' box, making their presence known through their loud cheers.

Before the players appeared, Court Philippe-Chatrier began with a performance of orchestral music and interpretive dance. However, Swiatek did not have an easy start to the match.

Once the match began and Swiatek took the lead, a French voice could be heard cheering on Jasmine. However, the game was still fairly even. Swiatek made a strategic move by targeting Paolini's backhand during her first service game, which forced Paolini to defend a break point in order to tie the game. Suddenly, Paolini turns the tables and breaks Swiatek in the next game due to a long forehand from Swiatek. Fans wearing the colors of Italy started to have hope, but Swiatek quickly dashed those feelings by breaking back and winning the next game.

Swiatek successfully maintained her serve and managed to break Paolini in the following game, taking the lead of 4-2. Paolini's serve began to struggle, resulting in double-faulting during the break point, coinciding with the erratic winds around Philippe-Chatrier. Meanwhile, Swiatek maintained her focus and passion. It's captivating to observe her impeccable behavior on clay; she appears to be a programmed winning-machine. Even prior to the coin-toss, Swiatek extensively prepares, taking practice swings, while her opponent stands by, typically listening to the umpire.

Swiatek's impressive gameplay has given her an amazing reputation that is well-deserved. In the tournament, she held her ground to make it 5-2 while Paolini struggled to win only four points after the third game's break. Things did not improve for the Italian when she attempted to serve to remain in the set. Her forehand was not accurate, sending the ball too far, which allowed Swiatek to have three break points. Swiatek managed to take advantage of one of those opportunities and broke Paolini's serve to win the first set in just 34 minutes.

Iga Swiatek aims to win her third consecutive French Open championship in the women's singles finale against Jasmine Paolini this Saturday at Roland Garros.

Swiatek is currently standing out as the strongest player on clay, having emerged victorious in three out of the last five championships at Roland Garros. What's even more impressive is that she is only 23 years old and is swiftly approaching Chris Evert's record of seven French Open singles titles. If she manages to win today's match, she will also become the first player since Justine Henin, who won three consecutive titles from 2005 to 2007, to achieve this feat. It's a daunting prospect indeed.

Twenty-eight-year-old Paolini may be considered the dark horse in this competition, but she has defied expectations by defeating tough opponents on her way to the final. In particular, her semifinal against the 17-year-old phenomenon Mirra Andreeva was a challenge that she overcame with skill and determination. Despite being the underdog, Paolini likely has some measure of assurance heading into the final.

Swiatek is quite familiar with Roland Garros and is in danger of establishing her own dominance similar to Rafael Nadal's impressive wins at the Suzanne-Lenglen trophy. She previously secured victories in 2020, 2022, and 2023 and is expected to capture another title this year. However, she faced a close call in the second round when she had to defend a match point against Naomi Osaka. This moment threw her off balance, but it served as a spark for her incredible streak of form, which included a speedy 40-minute triumph over Anastasia Potapova in the fourth round, marking her shortest tour-level career win. In the semifinals, she had to face US Open champion Coco Gauff but managed to emerge victorious in straight sets.

However, when it comes to comparing Swiatek to Nadal, she is not convinced yet. She believes that only time will tell if her journey will be similar to Nadal's. Swiatek feels honored to even be mentioned in the same sentence as Nadal, as she considers him to be an exceptional player and an all-time legend. Therefore, Swiatek would not expect anyone to compare her to Nadal, but she is proud of the consistency she has shown in her games.

At the tournament, Paolini was not expected to perform as well as she did, however she is now a key player in the rise of Italian tennis. Jannik Sinner also made an impressive showing and is set to become the world's top-ranked male player on Monday. Paolini's next challenge is facing off against Swiatek in the women's singles, and she will also compete alongside Sara Errani in the women's doubles final on Sunday. Additionally, Italy has Andrea Vavassori and Simone Bolelli playing in the men's doubles later on Saturday.

Paolini had to play three matches to defeat Bianca Andreescu and Elina Avanesyan in the third and fourth rounds, and then caused an upset by beating 2022 Wimbledon champion Elena Rybakina in the quarterfinals. Although her semifinal game was considered to be a 50/50 chance, Paolini won in two consecutive sets against Andreeva. However, her greatest challenge is yet to come.

Paolini admires Swiatek's consistency and success every week, acknowledging that it takes significant effort and dedication. Despite this, she aims to make the most of her upcoming opportunity to play against Swiatek on Saturday. Paolini hopes to embrace the experience and deliver a strong performance during the match.

Today is a gorgeous day at Roland Garros, so there will likely be a lot of topspin, high bounces, and fast-paced exchanges during the matches. Swiatek is currently favored to win, but Paolini seems confident that she can pull off one of the most significant upsets of the season.

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