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Iga Swiatek caps No. 1 ascent with third straight title at Miami Open, Sunshine Double
The Pole will top the WTA rankings after extending her win streak to 17 in a row at the Hard Rock Stadium, ousting former No. 1 Naomi Osaka in straight sets.
Published Apr 02, 2022
WATCH: Swiatek becomes the first woman since Victoria Azarenka (2016) to win a Sunshine Double.
Iga Swiatek solidified her position as the WTA tour’s most dominant player of 2022 by becoming the 11th player—and fourth woman—to capture the Indian Wells-Miami “Sunshine Double,” knocking out former world No. 1 Naomi Osaka, 6-4, 6-0 to win a 17th straight match and the Miami Open crown.
Swiatek, who is set to replace retiring world No. 1 Ashleigh Barty atop the WTA rankings on Monday, has won the last three tournaments she’s played—dating back to the Qatar TotalEnergies Open in Doha—and saved her most emphatic performance against a resurgent Osaka to lift the trophy after one hour and 19 minutes on Stadium court.
The 20-year-old also extended her winning streak in finals to six in a row, having not lost a championship match since reaching her first final in April 2019.
Swiatek assured herself of the No. 1 ranking when she won her opening round match at the Hard Rock Stadium last week, but has not let the accolade slow her down in the slightest, winning all six matches in Miami without dropping a set.
Her match against Osaka was their first in nearly three years, when the former No. 1 defeated the Pole in Toronto and formed a bond over their mutual admiration. While Swiatek has been all but unbeatable in 2022, Osaka has been in search of the form that took her to four major titles and through a 23-match win streak just last season.
The Miami sun seemed to set the 24-year-old alight as she rolled into the semifinals with wins over the likes of Angelique Kerber and Danielle Collins, and rallied from a set down to score a first tour-level win over nemesis Belinda Bencic—putting her into her first final in over a year.
Osaka navigated a seven-deuce opening game, during which she saved two break points, but Swiatek soon wore the Japanese star down and took that momentum through a decisive opening set, breaking serve three more times to serve for the match at 5-0.
Most impressive on serve, Swiatek didn’t allow Osaka a single break point, while converting four from 10 of her own.
Swiatek, who has announced she will miss the Credit One Charleston Open due to an arm injury, will next aim to parlay her phenomenal hard-court form onto clay, a surface that has traditionally been the 2020 Roland Garros winner’s favorite, with an astounding 21 winners and 14 unforced errors on Saturday up against Osaka’s 17 winners to 29 errors.
Still, Osaka can take heart from an encouraging week in Miami, one that puts her back into the Top 40 after taking a major rankings tumble last month.