Dubai: Iga Swiatek ousted by world No. 40 in SF, seven-match winning streak ends

Swiatek once again comes close to winning Dubai but falls short in her bid.

by Dzevad Mesic
Dubai: Iga Swiatek ousted by world No. 40 in SF, seven-match winning streak ends
© Getty Images Sport - Christopher Pike

World No. 1 Iga Swiatek has suffered her first defeat during this year's Middle East swing after being upset by world No. 40 Anna Kalinskaya in Dubai. 

Swiatek, the top-seeded player in Dubai and coming off a WTA 1000 win in Doha, saw her seven-match winning streak come to an end on Friday after Kalinskaya handed her a shock 6-4 6-4 defeat in the Dubai semifinal.

After completing a Doha three-peat without a dropped set last week, Swiatek also started her Dubai run with three consecutive straight-set wins. Considering her current form, the general expectation was that Swiatek would clinch another routine win over Kalinskaya and get one win away from winning her first Dubai title. 

But Swiatek - who got upset by Barbora Krejcikova in the 2023 Dubai final - once again made a deep Dubai run that ended with a surprise defeat. 

Iga Swiatek
Iga Swiatek© Getty Images Sport - Christopher Pike

How Swiatek lost to Kalinskaya?

Early in the first set, Swiatek saved two break points in the first game but also failed to convert her first break point in the following game. After a couple of missed break points early on, Swiatek earned the first break of the match in the sixth game for a 4-2 lead.

At that moment, it seemed like Swiatek finally found a way to break Kalinskaya's resistance. But then, Swiatek stunningly suffered back-to-back breaks and lost the next four games as Kalinskaya overturned the deficit to steal the first set from the top-seeded Pole.

After losing the last four games of the first set, Swiatek also got broken early in the second set as Kalinskaya took a 2-0 lead. Up by a set and a break, Kalinskaya claimed another break in the seventh game to push her lead to 5-2 and a double-break. 

Down by a set and two breaks and inches away from losing the match, Swiatek saved two match points in the eighth game and served out the next game to cut the deficit to 4-5. In the 10th game, Swiatek had a chance to completely get back into the match but Kalinskaya saved saved two break points before realizing her third match point to upset the Pole. 

In the Dubai final, Kalinskaya will play against Jasmine Paolini, who defeated Sorana Cirstea in three sets.

Iga Swiatek