Iga Swiatek took just 46 minutes to double-bagel Karolina Pliskova in the final of the 2021 Internazionali BNL d’Italia.
The ninth-seeded Pliskova, finalist in Rome for the third straight year, won just four points in the whole first set. The Czech had a double break point to go 2-1 up in the second set, but Swiatek fought off all chances of her opponent’s recovery.
Swiatek hit 17 winners to just five unforced errors, while Pliskova outweighed five winners with 23 unforced errors.
The 2019 Rome champion Pliskova’s post-match comment sums up her feelings in a few words:
I will just quickly forget about today.
It was far from an easy week for Swiatek in Rome. The 15th-seeded Pole saved two match points to get past Barbora Krejcikova in the third round and then had to play two matches in one day, when she defeated two-time Rome champion Elina Svitolina in a rain-postponed quarterfinal and 17-year-old Coco Gauff in the semis.
Having lost just 13 points in the Rome final, Swiatek tops the list of players who have lost the fewest points in a completed WTA final at the Premier 5, Premier Mandatory, WTA 1000 level. Previous low was 24 points, set by Serena Williams in her 2015 Miami win over Carla Suarez Navarro. Moreover, this is only the fifth time that a teenager has won a title at this tournament level.
This is the third title in the 19-year-old Swiatek’s career, following 2020 Roland Garros and 2021 Adelaide. From her current No.15 WTA ranking, the Pole will enter the Top 10 for the first time, at No.9. (photos: Jimmie48)