Iga Swiatek made waves in 2022 when she became one of a few female players to complete the Sunshine Double by winning both the Indian Wells and Miami Open titles.
It was an incredible achievement, placing her among the elite company of Steffi Graf, Victoria Azarenka, and Kim Clijsters. Out of these three legendary players, only Graf was able to do it twice, but it wasn't in consecutive seasons.
Now, the question remains - can Swiatek do it again? If Swiatek is able to defend her titles and complete the Sunshine Double for the second year in a row, she will etch her name into the history books once again, this time as the first female player ever to defend the prestigious Sunshine Double.
It won't be an easy feat, as many top players will be vying for the same titles, including current world number two Aryna Sabalenka, who won the only Grand Slam played this season, and also Elena Rybakina, who is the reigning Wimbledon champion and this year's finalist from Melbourne.
Defending a title is always harder than winning it for the first time, as opponents will be eager to take down the reigning champion. But Swiatek is no stranger to the pressure, having won the Roland Garros in 2020 as an unseeded player and continuing to impress with her consistency and mental toughness also in 2022, when she added her second title from Parisian clay and won her first one in the Flushing Meadows.
If Swiatek is able to make history by defending the Sunshine Double, it will not only solidify her status as the best player in the world, as her point total will stay the same, but also inspire a new generation of young players to chase their dreams on the court.
Although there is no woman who defended the Sunshine Double, there is one man who did it, twice in a row. Novak Djokovic, who is not able to compete in Indian Wells this year, won the Sunshine Double every year from 2014 to 2016.