Analyzing Sabalenka And Swiatek Year-End No. 1 Ranking Scenarios At WTA Finals

Analyzing Sabalenka And Swiatek Year-End No. 1 Ranking Scenarios At WTA Finals

by Nurein Ahmed

Last updated

Aryna Sabalenka and Iga Swiatek will battle each other for the year-end No. 1 ranking at the 2023 WTA Finals.

Sabalenka with 8,425 points in the WTA Race to Cancun is 630 points clear of second-placed Swiatek. USA's Coco Gauff trails the Belarusian by 2,470 points, meaning she is out of the picture. So what are the ranking permutations for the world's top two players at the season finale?

Analyzing Sabalenka's Chances Of Finishing As 2023 Year-End No. 1

For Aryna Sabalenka, the equation is a bit simple. She doesn't need to check on her shoulder and pip at Iga Swiatek's results. The Belarusian powerhouse will retain top spot by reaching the final match, provided she doesn't lose more than one match in the group phase.

In that case, Sabalenka will have earned 955 points (two round-robin wins, and managed to reach the final). If you add that to her current lead of 630 points, she'll have a 1,585-point lead. Swiatek can only garner a maximum of 1,500 points as an undefeated champion.

If the Pole loses one round-robin match, Sabalenka can clinch the No. 1 ranking by winning all three of her group-stage matches or reach the final (Sabalenka would be guaranteed to win a minimum of 750 points). When this is added to her current lead of 630 points it equals a 1,380-point gap. Swiatek can't win more than 1,375 points with at least one round-robin loss.

BEST CASE SCENARIO: Sabalenka reaches the final with 2-1 round-robin record. She keeps the No. 1 ranking irrespective of Swiatek's results.

Analyzing Swiatek's Chances Of Finishing As 2023 Year-End No. 1

For Iga Swiatek, it is not entirely on her racket. But all she can do is win and hope it imparts pressure on Aryna Sabalenka. Assuming both players record a 3-0 record in the group stage, then Swiatek can only reclaim the No. 1 spot by winning the title (undefeated champion) earning 1,500 points, and hoping Sabalenka doesn't reach the final.

In the event Sabalenka loses all her round-robin matches, Swiatek would need to win the title (regardless of her record in the round-robin stage). If the Pole doesn't win the title in this scenario, then she'll need to win all three round-robin matches.

BEST CASE SCENARIO: Swiatek wins the title (with at least two round-robin wins) and hopes Sabalenka doesn't reach the final (and suffers at least one round-robin defeat).


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