“Right Now It’s Easier”: Iga Swiatek Reveals How She Has Accustomed Herself to Unfavorable Conditions at Tokyo Olympics 2020

Published 07/24/2021, 9:00 AM EDT
Tokyo 2020 Olympics – Tennis – Women’s Singles – Round 1 – Ariake Tennis Park – Tokyo, Japan – July 24, 2021. Iga Swiatek of Poland in action during her first round match against Mona Barthel of Germany REUTERS/Mike Segar


2020 French Open champion Iga Swiatek got off to a perfect start at the Tokyo Olympics 2020. In her debut match at the Games, she comfortably overcame German Mona Barthel in straight sets, 6-2, 6-2. Consequently, Iga also became the third Polish tennis player to win a singles match in Olympics.

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Moreover, the 20-year-old got the opportunity to play on the main court courtesy of Japanese No.1 Naomi Osaka, making the Pole’s first Olympic victory all the more special.

Tokyo 2020 Olympics – Tennis – Women’s Singles – Round 1 – Ariake Tennis Park – Tokyo, Japan – July 24, 2021. Iga Swiatek of Poland in action during her first round match against Mona Barthel of Germany REUTERS/Mike Segar

After the match, Swiatek sat down to relive the experience she had on the humid Saturday in Tokyo. She even recalled how her father, a former Olympian, explained the event’s aura to her.

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Iga Swiatek relives her ‘special moment’ after R1 victory at Tokyo Olympics 2020

Primarily, four-time Grand Slam champion Naomi Osaka was supposed to play on the Centre Court on Saturday. However, due to her duties of lighting the Olympic cauldron a day before, her match got postponed to Sunday, giving Iga Swiatek her spot.

“It was amazing; I wasn’t expecting that. I know that they changed the schedule yesterday, but it was a special moment for me,” Swiatek said. “I know that right now I really feel the Olympic vibe.”

Furthermore, the Polish star revealed that her dad told her a lot about the Olympics, although she had a hard time imagining it. But, she did not hesitate in saying that it is a special event indeed.

“It’s different than any other tournament. I’m trying to give myself the opportunity to get used to it and focus on playing,” Swiatek added.

Tokyo 2020 Olympics – Tennis – Women’s Singles – Round 1 – Ariake Tennis Park – Tokyo, Japan – July 24, 2021. Iga Swiatek of Poland in action during her first round match against Mona Barthel of Germany REUTERS/Mike Segar

On humidity in Tokyo, the WTA World No.8 said that she still has not adapted to the climate. Funnily enough, she stated that perfect weather is in Great Britain or maybe [the weather] at 2020 Roland Garros.

Swiatek on Olympics preparations

Inarguably, many athletes struggled against the heat that went up to 32 degrees Celsius. However, Swiatek came to the Tokyo Olympics with complete preparations.

“It’s hard to get used to it, but we gave myself time, we came to Takasaki [about 100km north of Tokyo] before going to the Olympic village to get used to the jetlag, humidity, and right now it’s much, much easier [than when I arrived].”

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Even with preparations, Swiatek is wary of the conditions and other factors during the match. “I’m happy I’m in the second round, and I can just get the experience,” she concluded.

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In the second round, Iga will face the talented Spaniard Paulo Badosa. Let’s see if her Olympic dream continues in Tokyo or not.

Watch this Story: Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer, Serena Williams and Others Emotional Moments at Olympic Games

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Purav Joshi

1131 articles

Purav Joshi is a Tennis author at EssentiallySports. Having a degree in Films, Television and Media Production, he guided his passion for writing and journalism into the sport of aces and rallies. With over 2 years of experience as a copywriter, Purav has authored over 500 tennis articles.

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