“To hear the words from her, it means a lot,” Iga Swiatek shares her feelings on being praised by her predecessor Ashleigh Barty

Iga Swiatek recently talked about the praise she received from Ashleigh Barty regarding her World No.1 spot.

Ash Barty and Iga Swiatek
Ash Barty and Iga Swiatek

Ashleigh Barty said on Thursday that she will remove herself from the WTA rankings after announcing her retirement, opening the door for Poland’s Iga Swiatek to become World No 1. The three-time Grand Slam-winning Australian has held top spot for more than two years but stunned the sports world on Wednesday by announcing her retirement at just 25.

The 20-year-old Swiatek is a massive 2,204 ranking points behind Barty, but there will be a new No 1 on Monday when the new list comes out and the second-placed Pole is in prime position.

Iga Swiatek reflects on Ashleigh Barty’s reaction to her top spot

Iga Swiatek
Iga Swiatek

Ashleigh Barty said on Thursday that she will remove herself from the WTA rankings after announcing her retirement, opening the door for Poland’s Iga Swiatek to become World No 1.

The three-time Grand Slam-winning Australian has held the top spot for more than two years but stunned the sports world on Wednesday by announcing her retirement at just 25.

Talking about Ashleigh Barty’s praise about her, the Pole said that despite being the World No 1, she still cannot compete with and emulate what Ashleigh Barty did. She also exhibited a desire to fight.

Hearing these kind of words from her, I’m pretty grateful. Even when I was playing practices against her, I felt like I’m not in that place still to really compete against her. After Indian Wells, in my mind, it changed a lot, because I thought that maybe right now I can actually – I developed my Game a lot and I actually fight for being first,” said Swiatek.

Moving on, Swiatek also reiterated her respect and admiration for the former World No.1 Aussie, revealing that she had motivated her. She also said that it means a lot to hear from her, and thanked her.

“I always respect Ashleigh, and she gave me huge motivation to work on my tennis. And to hear the words from her, it means a lot. I don’t know how to even describe it. I’m just thankful,” added Swiatek.

The Pole will now face Madison Brengle in the third round on Sunday.

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