FLUSHING MEADOWS — Iga Swiatek will face Ons Jabeur for the US Open title on Saturday as the two best players in the world face off in the final.
Swiatek is hoping to secure her second grand slam title of 2022, having won the French Open at Roland Garros in June.
She is also the first Polish woman ever to reach the US Open final and had never made it past the fourth round here – while her opponent Jabeur had never even made it that far and is writing her own piece of inspirational history as the first women from Africa to reach the final.
“I just remember when I won the juniors 2011 French Open, there is a lot of tennis players trying to play tennis. Even adults, you know. Just not for professionally. But they really interested in that sport,” Jabeur said.
How to watch
Amazon Prime hold the broadcasting rights for the US Open in the UK, and the streaming service – available on Smart TVs as well as laptops, mobile devices and gaming consoles – offers viewers the option to select the match of their choice.
Prime customers can watch for no additional fees, while non-Prime members can start a 30-day free trial (£7.99/month or £79/year) or sign up to a Prime Video subscription (£5.99/month).
The US Open’s YouTube channel will broadcast extended highlights of match.
Order of play
(All times BST)
Arthur Ashe Stadium
- 5pm: Mixed doubles final, Storm Sanders/John Peers (4) vs Kirsten Flipkens/Edouard Roger-Vasselin
- Not before 9pm: Iga Swiatek (1) vs Ons Jabeur (5)
“I’m hearing that they want to call a complex under my name in Tunisia. I’m not sure about it. I didn’t see it. But I think it’s going to be huge.
“Definitely is going to give a powerful message. I feel like people are going to believe even more in playing tennis and becoming professional tennis players.”
Irrespective of the result, Swiatek and Jabeur will be the No 1 and No 2 players in the world on Monday when the rankings refresh, but lifting the trophy will mean so much more.
How they got there
Jabeur beat good friend and former junior rival Caroline Garcia in a one-sided semi-final on Thursday, triumphing 6-1 6-3 in just 66 minutes.
“It was the plan to just follow my coach for the first time, 100 per cent!” Jabeur said.
“But it was good. He’s satisfied.
“I know she was very confident so I had to really impose my game from the beginning, and it was working very well until the end of the match.”
Garcia had been on a 13-match unbeaten run but gave nothing like her best, spraying 23 unforced errors in total and being broken four times, more than the entire tournament to this point combined.
Jabeur’s best win en route to the final actually came against Ajla Tomljanovic in the quarter-finals. The Australian had knocked out the great Serena Williams, quietening a raucous crowd, and then Liudmila Samsonova, the Washington and Cleveland champion this summer. But Jabeur held her nerve against one of her best friends on tour, a victory that confirmed her title credentials.
Swiatek meanwhile was pushed hard in the semi-finals by Aryna Sabalenka. The Belarusian, who saved match points against Kaia Kanepi a week ago, led 4-2 in the final set, only to lose 16 of the last 20 points and hand Swiatek her place in a third grand slam final.
Head to head
Jabeur and Swiatek have a perfectly even head-to-head record, splitting their previous four meetings and even having won the same number of sets.
Their most recent meeting though came in the final on the clay of Rome, which Swiatek won for the loss of just four games.
“Iga never loses finals, so it’s going to be very tough,” Jabeur said.
“I know she struggled a little bit with the balls here, but I don’t see her struggling much, to be honest with you! She’s playing awesome.
“Definitely going for my revenge. I love playing on this surface, and I feel like I know exactly what to do against her.”
Swiatek meanwhile is not underestimating the challenge of facing the Wimbledon finalist, despite her impressive 16-1 record in finals at professional level, insisting their Italian clash earlier this year was closer than the 6-2 6-2 scoreline suggests.
“She has different game style than most of the players. She has a great touch. All these things mixed up, she’s just a tough opponent,” Swiatek said.
“That’s why probably our matches are, yeah, always kind of physical and really tight, even though the scores may be… I don’t know what was the score in Rome, but I remember it as a really tight match anyway, because there were a lot of advantages.”