Former four-time Grand Slam champion Kim Clijsters suggests that Iga Swiatek studying and analyzing the game has played a big part in the Pole's stunning rise. In 2022, Swiatek established herself as the most dominant player on the WTA Tour and the new face of women's tennis after Ashleigh Barty's retirement.
This year, Swiatek won two Grand Slams and there was a period between February and July, during which she won 37 consecutive matches - that set the record for the biggest winning streak on the WTA Tour in the 21st century.
"This year and the last few years, I've loved watching her [Iga Swiatek] grow, not just on the tennis court, but mentally as well. Just the way that she's able to improve her game. She has such an open mindset to learn and absorb from all the greats that walk around at the Grand Slams, from coaches.
She listens to commentators, she picks up so many things and is able to absorb it better than anyone I've seen on the women's tour," Clijsters said on The Craig Shapiro Tennis Podcast, as quoted on Sportskeeda.
Clijsters on Swiatek elevating her game in 2022
After the 2021 season ended, Swiatek put emphasis on becoming a more aggressive player in 2022.
It didn't take too long for Swiatek to learn how to be more aggressive and it made wonders for her this year. "You can tell that she was able to win a lot of tournaments when she was younger because she was able to bring so many balls back than the other girls as she was so much more consistent.
But what she's been able to do is take control of the offensive part of the game and she's been able to really learn how to do that. That's something that's really hard to do when your nature is to be a bit more defensive and to rely on your movement.
She steps up, her movement is better, she's even more consistent, but she's also more aggressive now. That's where she becomes, at times, really really tough to beat," Clijsters explained. Going into the new season, Swiatek is the most tipped player to achieve major things in 2023. It remains to be seen if Swiatek can win more Grand Slams next year.