2020 French Open final preview: Sofia Kenin vs. Iga Swiatek

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black friday 2021

The 2020 French Open final will be a battle of two young players: 21-year-old Sofia Kenin of the United States and 19-year-old Iga Swiatek of Poland.

General overview

The world number six Kenin already has a Grand Slam title to her name, the 2020 Australian Open. That fact may lead one to believe that experience is on her side. However, Swiatek, whose best result at a major before this fortnight was the fourth round, doesn’t seem afraid of big stages and she’s definitely super comfortable brushing aside top names. Anyone who watched her match against top seed Simona Halep can confirm this.

Saturday’s final will be the first meeting of Kenin and Swiatek. These stats don’t count in the fact that Swiatek beat Kenin in girls’ singles at Roland Garros in 2016.

Aspects that point to Swiatek as title favorite

The unseeded Swiatek raced to the final without dropping a set, while her upcoming opponent played four three-setters en route to the final. It’s astonishing to see that the Pole played a total of just 95 games, conceding a mere 23 games in her six matches. Kenin played 139 games.

Numbers that speak so much about Swiatek’s dominance are her hours spent on the court: the Pole spent an average of one hour and ten minutes on the court, while her longest match lasted just one hour and 18 minutes. Kenin spent about three hours and thirty minutes more in total.

Swiatek is not afraid to take risks. At important moments, she focuses and delivers her best game. It’s not that Kenin is any different, after all, that’s what led her to the title in Melbourne this year.

Writing history for Poland

Swiatek is bidding to become the first Polish player – man or woman – to win a Grand Slam singles title. She is the second Polish woman ever to reach the final in Paris, following in the footsteps of 1939 runner-up Jadwiga Jedrzejowska.

Ranking projection

The 54th-ranked Swiatek is guaranteed to jump to a career-high ranking of No.24 and will break into the Top 20 at No.17 should she lift the title. By reaching the final, Kenin will match her career-high ranking of No.4 and move to No.3 with the title.

Grand Slam champs are getting younger

The champion will be the seventh major winner aged 23 or younger at the past eight majors. The average age of the champions in this time span will be either 21.50 (if Swiatek wins) or 21.75 (if Kenin wins) – by comparison, the average age of the eight previous major champions was 27.40.

Final thoughts

I think we can expect a very good final. Both players are young, focused, determined, mentally strong and capable of greatness. I’m favoring Swiatek to win, if she delivers the level that she had in her previous matches in Paris this fortnight. Kenin is definitely a tough opponent. So far, Swiatek has only one victory and two losses to Top 10 opposition.

Who do you think will win? Tell me in the comments below! 

5 COMMENTS

  1. Swiatek in 3. Kenin’s father will go and sit by Iga’s coach to try and distract her (like he did in the Ferro match) but it won’t work here. It will be a fun match to watch between these two youngsters.

  2. I think Swiatek will get the win.
    Should be a good final…looking forward to it!
    But win or lose AMAZING tournament for Iga…in both singles and doubles!!!

  3. Frank, yeah, imagine, she also reached the doubles semifinals! Some people commented how doubles could distract her from singles and make her tired, but Iga actually said that she’s learned a lot from playing with Nicole Melichar and doubles have helped her stay alert and in competitive mood.

  4. i think Swiatek will win too. Likely in 3 sets, or tight 2 sets. Swiatek game looks solid. I mean only lost 23 games otw to the final is just impressive for any kind of player.
    I feel like theres nothing special about Kenin, her groundies are basic, she can keep up rallies with power players but doesnt over power them, her speed around the court is so so (Halep is faster n better).
    Her tennis quality doesnt scream star athlete
    At least players Barty’s has that big serve, killer signature bh slice, Osaka hit with tremendous power.
    I think Kenin’s best asset is just her consistency.

  5. Ian, just though it would be interesting to share this as well: The fewest games dropped en route to the final was by Mary Pierce in 1994, only ten games lost.

    Kenin’s great aspect is her mental toughness. She doesn’t panic and stays calm at important moments.

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