HomeTennisAryna Sabalenka comment after losing to Iga Swiatek again speaks volumes

Aryna Sabalenka comment after losing to Iga Swiatek again speaks volumes


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Aryna Sabalenka saw the lighter side of her Italian Open final defeat to Iga Swiatek as she cracked a post-match joke in the direction of her team. Sabalenka went down in straight sets, with Swiatek turning on the style to claim her second victory over the Belarusian in the space of two weeks.

Swiatek only made eight unforced errors in a dominant display just weeks after beating Sabalenka in the Madrid Open final. She had to resist seven break points in the last set but came up with an answer to every question asked of her by Sabalenka.

Sabalenka was naturally disappointed with the result but seemed to see the funny side in her post-match interview. She drew laughter from around the arena as she jokingly blamed her team, saying: “Of course, last but not least, I want to thank my team for helping me lose another final. That’s all your fault, guys!

“No, I’m kidding. They know everything. I’m really happy to have you guys by my side. Three rounds before, we weren’t sure if we were going to make it to the final. It was a huge achievement with a little injury and hopefully I’ll recover fast for Roland Garros.”

In her press conference, Sabalenka opened up on the back injury she has been playing through over the last few weeks. She explained that she was trying to avoid making the problem worse ahead of the French Open, which is set to get underway later this month.

“When you have some sort of injury and you’re trying to recover during the tournament, it stays in the back of your mind,” she said.

“You try to kind of, like, protect your body a little bit, so probably in some points there were moments where I could push myself a little bit more but I didn’t want to get injured before Roland Garros. It’s kind of like affecting you a little bit just by being there in the back of your mind.

“I wouldn’t say I lost the match today because of my back, obviously not. I think I did pretty well here in Rome struggling with illness, then injury, lots of stuff happened. Anyway, proud of myself that I’ve been able to get to the final, no matter what.”

Sabalenka also had some kind words for Swiatek, who had the upper hand from start to finish as she clinched her third Italian Open title in four years.

“I think her movement is incredible,” added Sabalenka. “You always know that you have to build the point and you have to finish the point. It’s not going to be an easy point anyway. You have to be really there. I would say her movement is really, really good. I would say she’s really good in every asset of the game.”

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