Swiatek thrashes US Open finalist Fernandez

Adelaide (Australia) (AFP) – Iga Swiatek showcased her Australian Open credentials with a 6-1, 6-2 demolition of US Open finalist Leylah Fernandez at the Adelaide International on Thursday.


The Pole, who won the 2020 French Open as a 19-year-old, took just 77 minutes to dispose of the Canadian and set up a quarter-final clash against former world number one Victoria Azarenka.

Azarenka, a two-time Australian Open champion, was made to work hard by Australian wildcard Priscilla Hon before winning 6-3, 7-5.

Swiatek, the defending champion this week, was in superb touch against an opponent who had been expected to trouble her.

She hit 20 clean winners and made just 10 unforced errors as the power and precision of her groundstrokes kept Fernandez on the defensive.

She broke Fernandez twice in each set and faced no break points of her own in a dominant display.

"I felt really confident and I was happy I could finish it so quickly," Swiatek said.

The fifth-seeded Swiatek, 20, said playing Fernandez presented a new problem for her.

"I was pretty stressed because this was the first time I was playing someone younger than me," she said of her 19-year-old opponent.

"I'm usually the young one."

Azarenka, who will also be a threat at the Australian Open later this month, found the going tougher than she might have expected against Hon, the world number 263.

But the Belarusian did just enough in each set to see off Hon in an hour and 27 minutes.