Iga Swiatek has reclaimed the world No 1 spot from Aryna Sabalenka and finished as the Year End No 1 in back-to-back seasons. On Monday, Swiatek ousted Jessica Pegula 6-1 6-0 in the final at the WTA Finals. Going into the final in Cancun, Swiatek had two things on the line - a first WTA Finals title and also returning to the world No 1 ranking.
Had Swiatek lost to Pegula, Sabalenka would have stayed at No 1 and earned her first Year-End No 1. In the semifinals in Cancun, Swiatek saw off Sabalenka 6-3 6-2. Going into their semifinal match, Swiatek needed to beat Sabalenka and then also win the final in order to return to the world No 1.
On the other side, Sabalenka would have sealed the Year-End No 1 just by beating Swiatek in the semifinal.
Swiatek replaces Sabalenka at the world No 1 spot
After reaching the world No 1 ranking for the first time in her career on April 4th, 2022, Swiatek stayed at the top spot for 75 consecutive weeks.
At the US Open, Swiatek - who was the defending champion - lost in the round-of-16 to Jelena Ostapenko. With that loss, Swiatek lost the world No 1 ranking and Sabalenka reached the top spot for the first time in her career.
After a very disappointing US Open, Swiatek bounced back impressively as the Pole won a WTA 1000 tournament in Beijing last month before coming to Cancun and also collecting her first WTA Finals title. After winning Beijing, Swiatek explained what would be different if she reached the world No 1 spot again.
"I would say if I would become world No 1 again, for sure I think I would be kind of more prepared for everything. It's not like I would change some things exactly, but I would know how to deal with them at this point. I think if I learn and take lessons from it, it's going to be easier.
But for sure the first thing is getting there. I'll just try to do that. For now, step by step. I'll just celebrate this trophy," Swiatek said in October.