Saturday, 20 Apr, 2024


Swiatek to face Rybakina in Qatar Open final 

Sports Desk |
Update: 2024-02-17 11:29:49
Swiatek to face Rybakina in Qatar Open final  [photo collected]

World number one Iga Swiatek will face Elena Rybakina in the women's singles final at the Qatar Open on Saturday.

Swiatek won the title in 2022 and 2023 and advanced to another final as Karolina Pliskova had to withdraw because of a back injury.

Rybakina, the 2022 Wimbledon champion, beat Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 6-2 6-4 to reach her third final of 2024.

Pliskova had defeated Japan's Naomi Osaka in the quarter-finals on Thursday but was unable to play on Friday.

"Sorry for the tournament that I had to withdraw, but unfortunately I had too many matches in the last couple of days, and my body just didn't react well, especially after last night having a tough match against Naomi," said Czech player Pliskova, who won the Transylvania Open title on Sunday.

"I felt like I was pushing it a little bit over limit, and then I felt very big pain in my lower back, so I'm not able to compete any more."

Poland's Swiatek has won her last 11 completed matches in Doha and is aiming to become the first player to win the same WTA singles title in three successive years since Serena Williams was victorious at the Miami Open in 2013, 2014 and 2015.

Writing on social media, Swiatek said: "I'm happy to be in another final here in Doha but I wish we could play tonight and entertain you guys. Hope you'll get well soon @KaPliskova.

"Congrats to you and your team on your great two weeks."

World number four Rybakina, from Kazakhstan, has won 15 of the 17 matches she has played in 2024 and taken titles in Brisbane and Abu Dhabi.

She has a 3-1 winning head-to-head record from past meetings with Swiatek, with the most recent of the wins coming by the way of a third-set retirement by the Pole last year in Rome.

BDST: 1128 HRS, FEB 17, 2024

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