Top-ranked Iga Swiatek needed more than two hours to post a 6-4, 4-6, 6-1 victory over Zheng Qinwen of China in her opening match at the WTA 500 San Diego Open.
Contending with a steady mist that caused a 30-minute delay just after the match’s initial point was played and a brief halt early in the second set, Swiatek shook off the hard-hitting Qinwen, ranked 28th, in the Round-of-16 match.
Swiatek’s victory was the 61st on the WTA tour this year for the 21-year-old from Poland, who has held the world’s top ranking since 4 April.
“I wasn’t expecting to have this kind of good experience so soon in my career,” said Swiatek, who has notched six titles in 2022, including the U.S. Open, French Open and Indian Wells. “It’s like my dreams are coming true.”Swiatek will now face Cco Gauff whose lunging down-the-line forehand just out of Andreescu’s reach sent her into today’s quarterfinal match against the top-seed Swiatek.
The match will be a reprise of this year’s French Open final, won in straight sets by Swiatek, who also defeated Gauff in the 2021 Italian Open.
“Iga is a champion, so we’ll see how things go this time,” said the 18-year-old Gauff, who has competed against Swiatek since both were highly-ranked juniors.
The $757,900 WTA 500 San Diego Open, held at San Diego’s Barnes Tennis Center, features seven of the top 10 players in the rankings.