Ukraine has its first Olympics tennis medal as World No. 6 and 4th seeded Elina Svitolina wins the Bronze Medal in a thrilling 3-setter encounter against Kazakhstan’s Elena Rybakina. In a match that went on for 2 hours and 24 minutes, Svitolina won the tie 1-6, 7-6(5), 6-4 with the 2nd set going for 61 minutes and the 3rd set going for 55 minutes.
While Rybakina won the points on her forehand and backhand hitting 19 and 21 winners respectively, Svitolina managed only 13 forehands and 4 backhands. The difference came out in the discipline as Svitolina had 30 forced and 29 unforced errors to Rybakina’s 21 forced and 57 errors that affected the result of the match as Rybakina had 111 points while Svitolina had 105.
Both the players were neck-to-neck in nearly all the statistics and the match came down to the nerves and Svitolina prevailed through despite losing multiple match points in the 10th game of the 3rd set, won the tie and clinched the Bronze Medal after a great week in Tokyo where she had to overcome great hurdles and won 4 of her matches in 3-sets out of the 6 she played.
This victory is definitely one of the top moments of her career as the Ukrainian continue her hunt for her maiden Grand Slam title despite having won 15 career titles that include 4 WTA-1000 titles and 1 WTA Tour Championships.
Elina Svitolina justifies her tag of flagbearer of Ukrainian tennis
Svitolina who turned Pro in 2010 and won her first WTA title in 2013 and with consistent performances over the years earned the tag as the flagbearer of Ukrainian tennis. However, her failure to win a Grand Slam despite reaching the semi-finals of Wimbledon and US Open in 2019 questioned her tag on numerous occasions.
But this Bronze medal at the Olympics will surely be proof of her talent and potential and with consecutive battles in 3-sets for the majority of her matches this week in Tokyo, Elina has surely justified her tag and given yet another hope to Ukrainian tennis. Elina will surely be looking to take this confidence and momentum on the Hardcourt season that will begin in the USA in the coming weeks.