Iga Swiatek says she is actually perfectly fine with performance byes in tennis and has no problems playing an additional match. After Elena Rybakina strongly criticized the performance bye rule, Aryna Sabalenka also criticized it, saying she feels "you have to earn those byes." On Monday, second-seeded Swiatek kicked off her China Open campaign in Beijing with a 6-4 6-3 win.
After the match, four-time Grand Slam champion Swiatek addressed performance byes in tennis. “I haven't said much about this rule because these are the first events I've played in where this type of thing is happening, even though we've been in the calendar for a long time.
It seems smart to me, when I had tournaments where I went very deep then I know what it means to rush ahead of the next one, without time to rest and prepare. I think the rule is fine, it makes sense. It’s just striking to see that some favorites don't have a Bye.
I know there has been some misunderstanding, a bit of scandal, but I just want to focus on my tennis. I don't care if I have to play one more game, for me it's another opportunity to play and win. Truly, I don't care if I play another game or not," Swiatek said, via The Tennis Letter.
Iga Swiatek on performance byes:
“I haven't said much about this rule bc these are the first events I've played in where this type of thing is happening, even though we've been in the calendar for a long time. It seems smart to me, when I had tournaments where I went very deep… pic.twitter.com/G9QRTlgPNW — The Tennis Letter (@TheTennisLetter) October 2, 2023
Swiatek routinely handled Sorribes Tormo
Swiatek earned the first break of the match in the fifth game but Sorribes Tormo broke back immediately in the following game to tie the first set to three games apiece.
However, blowing her first break didn't impact Swiatek, who broke Sorribes Tormo again in the seventh game for a 4-3 lead. Swiatek then held on to her service for the remainder of the first set to clinch the opener. The second set was a festival of breaks as eight out of nine games were breaks of serve - Swiatek claimed five breaks and served out one service game, while Sorribes Tormo three won games were all breaks of serve.
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