Sabalenka 'Definitely Not The Favourite' Heading Into French Open After Two Swiatek Defeats

Sabalenka 'Definitely Not The Favourite' Heading Into French Open After Two Swiatek Defeats

by Zachary Wimer

Aryna Sabalenka doesn't see herself as the favorite heading into the 2024 Roland Garros, especially after how the Italian Open final went.

The courts at the Italian Open and the Madrid Open play very differently because Madrid is high in altitude, which changes how balls fly on a tennis court. Madrid suits Sabalenka far better than Rome, which is why the final between her and Iga Swiatek was very competitive.

The Polish player ultimately won in the Spanish capital, but she also won the final in Rome. The final in Rome, however, was much easier for her, as she favors the more typical slower clay courts.

The courts in Paris play similarly to that, and it's part of why Sabalenka doesn't see herself as a favorite for the second major in the calendar. Swiatek is just too good on clay right now so she's going to be the favourite in the French capital.

"Well, I mean, I'm not like underdog there. Being No. 2 seeded, it's tough to call yourself 'underdog'. I'm definitely not the favorite probably there. But at the same time I do feel that I can actually go for it. It's 50/50, you know? But I prefer to be underdog (smiling)."

Sabalenka talks 'favourites' at Roland Garros

Sabalenka is correct in dismissing the underdog tag because she's not an underdog. She's probably the number 2 favorite to win the event behind Swiatek; it's just she's not the favorite.

She can easily make the final, considering how she's played, and she wants it because anything can happen in the final, as she proved multiple times in the past.

"Yeah, I really hope I'm going to make it to the final and I really hope I'll be able to get that win, if it's Iga or not. It's an amazing tournament. It's a Grand Slam. I'll just go there and fight for every point and see what happens after the tournament."


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