Iga Swiatek defended the champion's crown of Porsche Tennis Grand Prix in Stuttgart, defeating Aryna Sabalenka with a score 6-3 6-4 in Sunday's final. It is 13th career's title for the Pole, who proved her dominance on clay surface after coming back from break cause by the injury, which lasted one month.
Swiatek was a pre-match favourite before the clash between the world's number 1 and 2. However, the Belarusian was surely not a player to write-off. Sabalenka showed previously in the week, that the switch between hard courts and clay did not influence her confidence and great form which allows her to hold a position of WTA Race leader in 2023 is still there.
The course of events during today's final clash was not a big story tough, despite the expectations of high quality battle ended up with some three-sets drama, which all the fans were waiting for. Swiatek showed an ultimate performance, being super composed and not allowing her aggresively playing opponent to cause to much fear during own service games. The Pole produced first breakpoint in second game of the match, but the serve was still on level till the 8th game, where Swiatek produced another 3 chances and gained the crucial advantage. The world's number one followed the blow and broke Sabalenka again in the opening game of second set. That was almost the end of story, as both players were playing well during own service games till the end. Swiatek could extend the lead to 3-0, but Sabalenka made a crucial hold in 3rd game to stay alive in this match. The Belarusian had the only one chance to level the score, producing the only one breakpoint in whole the day, but Swiatek cleared the danger and did not face any single fear till the end of the match. It was no drama related with multiple momentum switches and slumps appearing on both sides of the net today, as this final was a great quality performance from both players, even despite the one-sided score. Only two breaks decided the image of whole the battle, but both the finalists were keeping good level throughout whole the afternoon and it's just surely just a preview of some other great battles between them, possibly even during the further part of clay season.
Today's settlement does not change anything of top of the official WTA rankings, are both Swiatek and Sabalenka repeat their last year's results. Sabalenka leaves the court defeated after the final match in Stuttgart for the third time in a row, but this great result grounds her lead in WTA Race, with 564 points advantage over Elena Rybakina. Swiatek jumps into third place, but her gap to the Belarusian is still huge, as it counts 1550 points right now.