Swiatek triumphs after tennis thriller in Paris
First of all, Iga Swiatek looks like the clear winner in the final of the French Open in Paris. But outsider Karolina Muchova fought back bravely. In a thriller, the favorite triumphs at the end.
Iga Swiatek dropped the bat, covered his face with his hands and crouched down crying for several seconds. In a final thriller over 2:46 hours, the 22-year-old Pole celebrated her third triumph at the French Open and defeated the surprise Czech finalist Karolina Muchova 6:2, 5:7, 6:4.
The world number one lost the first set in the course of the tournament, but showed nerves of steel and her extra class at the end. With the score at 3:0 in the second set, the game almost seemed decided in Swiatek’s favour, but Muchova stayed in the game with an irrepressible will to fight. After the first emotional scenes, Swiatek jumped relieved over the red ashes on the Philippe-Chatrier court.
Swiatek had already triumphed in the classic clay court in Paris in 2020 and 2022. The world rankings-43. Muchova celebrated the greatest success of her career with her first final in a Grand Slam tournament.
Swiatek had a lot more trouble than in her first two final wins at the Stade Roland Garros: Last year it was 6: 1, 6: 3 against the American Cori Gauff, in 2020 the Pole won 6: 4, 6: 1 against Sofia Kenin from the UNITED STATES. Swiatek once again underlined their current exceptional position: Only Monica Seles and Naomi Osaka had previously won their first four Grand Slam finals in the professional history of tennis for women.
Muchova begins nervously
During the course of the tournament, Swiatek was on the pitch more than four hours less than her opponent – and she also prevailed thanks to her strong physique. Only in the semifinals against the Brazilian Beatriz Haddad Maia was the Pole really challenged. Muchova, on the other hand, had delivered the best women’s game of the tournament in the semifinals in a duel with Aryna Sabalenka. In her victory over the second in the world rankings, she fended off a match point in the third set when the score was 2:5.
And the Czech, who was repeatedly stopped by injuries in her career, initially did not find her way into the game at all. After a nervous start from Muchova, Swiatek was already 3-0 after just ten minutes. But slowly the outsider got used to the big stage. Muchova gained confidence, came back, tried to play her variable game like she did against Sabalenka. The 26-year-old was able to serve twice in the first set, but Swiatek initially fended off all of her opponent’s attacks with stoic composure.
In 54 games on clay, Swiatek had only lost once after winning the first round – against Muchova 2019. But it didn’t look like it at first. Again, the clay court dominator quickly won the first three games. But when everything seemed ready for the big victory party, at which soccer star Robert Lewandowski surprised her last year, Muchova turned things up again. With a lower error rate than before, she equalized to 3:3.
Excellent third movement
And suddenly Swiatek lost its sovereignty. The game became high quality and dramatic. When the score was 6:5, Muchova got the set ball at the most spectacular point of the game: Thanks to her great athleticism, she converted a volley and lost the racket from her hand. A backhand from Swiatek then sailed out – set equalization.
The game went back and forth. Whenever a player finally seemed on the way to victory, her opponent came back. Despite breakballs, Swiatek made it 5: 4 – and was able to celebrate a little later.