Elena Rybakina has continued her incredible start to the 2024 season, reaching her fifth final of the year with a 6-3, 4-6, 6-3 victory over Iga Swiatek in the semifinals of Stuttgart on Saturday.

And she achieved a lot with her latest win over the world No. 1:

It was her tour-leading 25th win of the year. Going into their semifinal clash, Rybakina and Swiatek were tied for most wins on the women's tour so far this year with 24 each.

She’s now into her tour-leading fifth final of the year. She’s actually the first woman to reach five finals in the first four months of the year since Victoria Azarenka in 2012.

She’s the first player ever to defeat Swiatek in Stuttgart. Swiatek had been 10-0 at the WTA 500-level event, winning the title in her only two previous appearances in 2022 and 2023.

She's also the first player ever to defeat Swiatek in a clay-court semifinal. The Pole had been 9-0 in her career in tour-level semifinals on the surface heading into Saturday’s encounter.

Rybakina is now 5-0 in semifinal matches this year.

Rybakina is now 5-0 in semifinal matches this year.


And finally, Rybakina has now won five of her last seven matches against reigning world No. 1s, all of those matches coming since the start of the 2023 season. Before 2023, she was 0-2.

l. to No. 1 Barty in ’20 Australian Open 3rd Rd, 6-3, 6-2
l. to No. 1 Barty in ’22 Adelaide F, 6-3, 6-2
d. No. 1 Swiatek in ’23 Australian Open 4th Rd, 6-4, 6-4
d. No. 1 Swiatek in ’23 Indian Wells SFs, 6-2, 6-2
d. No. 1 Swiatek in ’23 Rome QFs, 2-6, 7-6 (3), 2-2 ret. (thigh injury)
d. No. 1 Sabalenka in ’23 Beijing QFs, 7-5, 6-2
l. to No. 1 Sabalenka in ’23 WTA Finals RR, 6-2, 3-6, 6-3
l. to No. 1 Swiatek in ’24 Doha F, 7-6 (8), 6-2
d. No. 1 Swiatek in '24 Stuttgart SFs, 6-3, 4-6, 6-3


After Rybakina took the 49-minute first set on Saturday, Swiatek hung tough with her throughout the second set, staying on serve through the first nine games—and then pouncing with her first break of the match to clinch the second set after 56 minutes.

After another four holds to start the third set, Rybakina struck back, breaking for 3-2—and then broke one last time to close out the match after two hours and 49 minutes on court.

The two players saved a combined total of 27 break points in the match, with Rybakina converting on 4 of 20 and Swiatek on 2 of 13. The Kazakh finished with an almost even ratio of winners to unforced errors, 38 to 39, while the Pole had 32 to 42 on the day.

“It was, like always, a tough match,” Rybakina said. “I was fighting for every ball and it was such a close match, and I’m really happy that I managed to win and that I showed a good game.

“It’s always tough to play Iga. We always push each other.”

Rybakina is now a win away from her third title of the year, having already triumphed at two other WTA 500 events—both on hard courts—in Brisbane and Abu Dhabi. She’s also been a runner-up this year in Doha (to Swiatek) and Miami (to Danielle Collins).