Kontaveit defeated in straight-sets in emotional Doha final

Anett Kontaveit
Anett Kontaveit Source: Priit Mürk/ERR

Anett Kontaveit was defeated by Iga Swiatek (Poland) straight sets, 6:2, 6:0 in an emotional final at the WTA 1000 Qatar TotalEnergies Open in Doha on Saturday.

Kontaveit, who had overcome Elise Mertens (Belgium), Ons Jabeur (Tunisia), and Jelena Ostapenko (Latvia) en route to the final last met Swiatek in the U.S. Open last August, when the Pole was also victorious, taking to two wins each the head-to-head between the pair, ranked next to each other at 7th (Kontaveit) and 8th (Swiatek) in the world.

The event was a WTA1000 tournament, the most prestigious level of competition after the four grand-slam competitions and the first final of its kind Kontaveit had reached since 2019, though she had had a long run of winning form from half-way through last season up to the present, winning in St. Petersburg earlier this month.

Swiatek broke early on and went ahead 2:1 and, while the Estonian broke next, this was the last game she won both in the set and the match. While she staved off two break points with the score at 4:2, she lost the third one and, while having two break points over Swiatek in the next game, was unable to convert these and lost 6:2.

The second set was more of a formality, with Swiatek breaking again in the opening game, and doing so for the remainder of Kontaveit's service game, while holding her own erve on the one break point Kontaveit managed to get.

Post-match, Kontaveit said: "I want to congratulate Iga, you are fantastic and you are getting better still. Congratulations to you and your team, it was a great week."

"Of course, this is not the result I wanted, but it was a very good week for me too. I am happy with the way my game has developed, which is thanks to my team - thank you [coach] Dmitri [Tursunov] and thank you Tarmo [Tiits], and thank you to everyone who supports me ," she added.

"Physically, I'm fine, but yes, maybe some kind of emotion came up and it was hard to deal with it," she continued, in the light of this week's events.

An emotional Swiatek picked up on this also, saying that: "I want to express my support for the people who are suffering in Ukraine. Watching these events makes me very emotional. I cannot believe that this is happening in my neighborhood."

"It's a small thing, but sports bring us joy and it unites us," the winner added.

The fresh WTA rankings should see the pair switch places, but both also move up, with Swiatek likely to be the new world number four and Kontaveit reaching a career-high fifth.


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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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