Iga Swiatek continues red hot form in Dubai exhibition

Iga Swiatek has fired the first warning shot at any challengers at the Australian Open with another dominant display at an exhibition event in Dubai.

Swiatek showed plenty of quality in her singles showdown with Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova.

Her 6-3, 6-4 victory achieved in 80 minutes pushed her team, The Kites, back into the lead in their tie against The Hawks at the 2022 World Tennis League.

Earlier, The Hawks won their opening match of their tie at the Dubai 2022 World Tennis League against The Kites by a razor-thin margin thanks to Alexander Zverev and Elena Rybakina.

The Zverev/Rybakina axis defeated Felix Auger-Aliassime and Sania Mirza in a closely contested mixed doubles match, 7-5, 3-6.

However, Swiatek was in no mood to take defeat lying down and quickly took control of the opening set against her Russian foe.

The opening break went to the Pole, who had the stronger start, but the Russian quickly retaliated and added a second break to take the lead 4-3. However, Swiatek won three straight games to take the first set 6-4, and Pavlyuchenkova was only able to win one more point in the opening set.

After breaking her opponent and saving her from four break points in the second set, Pavlyuchenkova was once again in a position to win the set, leading 3-1.

However, Swiatek once more displayed her abilities and resilience as she won five straight games to take the match 6-4, 6-3 in 80 minutes and give her team the advantage.

Swiatek had also been doing her bit to lift morale during the unique team event. She has enjoyed the outing feeling able to cut loose in the exhibition format.

"Truth be told, I wasn't counting games. I'm pretty confident I can focus on other things in matches, change something up with my tactics, or just implement what I've been working on in the off-season.

The score isn't the most important thing here. Mostly it's fun and learning, so I'm pretty happy that I played such a solid game," Swiatek reflected earlier this week.

Swiatek also said that even as the World No 1 she is just a 21-year-old and she believes she still has a lot to learn.

"There's always something to improve. I'm 21, so I think I can actually do many things, but on volleys, especially, we've been working on my volley game," the WTA Rankings queen declared.

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