Preview: WTA at the 2023 Roland Garros

Navratilova: Swiatek “may not quite be at that stage yet, but she still should be super confident.”

Last year in the final at Roland Garros, Iga Swiatek won the title, winning seven matches and only one set. In the last three matches, she won so easy, and in the final, she smoked Coco Gauff 6-1, 6-3. That was the second time she won another Slam.

As the 18 Grand Slam Martina Navratilova said, she thinks that if she is 100 percent, fiscally, she can win it, again. Once forever, the Pole won Madrid.

Iga Świątek
Mal Taam/MALTphoto

“I definitely want to see [Swiatek] in full flight. I want to see her supplanted only if people play better than her, not because she was injured. Last year, Iga almost forgot how to lose. She may not quite be at that stage yet, but she still should be super confident.”

Absolutely. However, Swiatek has had a pretty good year, but not fantastic. Her forehand and her backhand is gigantic, and her return is aggressive. At the net, she is still learning how to react, and also, at times, she is not patient enough, all the time. But it changes each year, so when she walk into Paris, then she will remember that in 2022, she knew exactly how to play. She did win Stuttgart last month, so she is right there.

If you look at the field, there are only two who won Roland Garros, with Barbora Krejcikova and Jelena Ostapenko.  Two of the other players, with Simona Halep and Garbine Muguruza, both won it, but Halep has been suspended, and Muguruza decided not to play for a couple months. She is sick of playing tennis.

There are a number of players who can win the event, all 10 of them, such as obviously, Swiatek, Krejcikova , Ostapenko,  and maybe Aryna Sabalenka, Elena Rybakina , Jessica Pegula, Gauff, Veronika Kudermetova, Paula Badosa and the French women, Caroline Garcia, who played fantastic last year, but in the French Open, she has yet into the semis.

Navratilova was a dominant players, in the hardcourts, on the grass, and on the clay, too.

She does think that while they are playing, they have to be super patient, and not  to be spacey.

“Sabalenka [who won in Madrid] and Rybakina [who won in Rome], they would be the favorites to win. No doubt about it, the way they’ve played on the clay,” Navratilova said. “All those players should be pretty confident coming in, with Swiatek having the most if her body is 100 percent. We could have a surprising winner, but chances are it will be one of the three.”

Two of the Americans,  Pegula and Gauff, looked highly good at times, and yes, in the doubles, they are way up there. However, they have had some fine matches, but also, they can unfulfilled. Both of them have improved at the net, and retuning, too, but however, in the singles, they have to change if up, even more. Gauff has thrown some solid wins, but in 2023, she has lost some solitary matches. She still has to remedy her forehand, and also, her second serve. But both of them are severe when they are striking the ball.

In the second week, the excellent doubles player, as well as the singles,  Krejcikovi, won it two years ago, so she will be charge up. The huge hitter, Ostapenko, can hit some massive, crazy shots, and she can also miss a ton of  errors, but she is locked in, and she can snap it into the corners. The Russian Kudermetova can be very stable, and the Spaniard, Badosa, can be super patient. Or how about the French woman, Caroline Garcia, who had a terrific last year, but she has yet to reach the semis at Roland Garros, ever. She has said that it can be so much pressure in Paris. It could be, and next week, they will all find out if they are playing great, mediocre, or playing poorly. That will be a fascinating to watch, with another, interesting, year.