Iga Swiatek when asked a few years ago about the things that had happened in her life, she replied that she was only 19 years old and nothing out of the ordinary had happened in her life. She said that, as a child, she took to tennis because she was full of energy and it made her take her own decisions.
Firstly, Swiatek didn’t love tennis that much and had no idea how much it would go on to bring into her life. She harbored ambitions of becoming a professional tennis player when she was playing her first junior Grand Slam at the French Open. The facilities available in her country were limited and she didn’t have many to turn to for guidance.
In such a state, she had to hold her own to succeed and she did so with flying colors. She felt that people are mostly not aware of the pressure, tennis players have to go through. Understanding that her private life had a bearing on her play, she started focusing on her relationship with her parents.
Iga felt that school is an essential part of her life and she felt that being ambitious to go with her drive for perfection made her try and do everything correctly. However, her interactions with a psychologist and her fascination for the subject made her understand that not everything needs to be done perfectly.
Swiatek had commented, “…I can enter the university in the next few years. It depends on my tennis career. If I win the Grand Slam next year and get up to the top 5, I won’t have time.” At 19, when she won the Roland Garros, she was still a student in high school, and the Polish educational system needs to be credited for this feat.
Iga Swiatek has been named one of TIME’s 100 Most Influential People of the Year
It is for everyone to see that, when Iga Swiatek plays tennis, three things crop up namely, beauty, power, and truth. Throughout her rise to the top of the sport, she has always exhibited courage and vulnerability. So it isn’t much of a surprise that she was named one of TIME’s 100 Most Influential People of the Year.
This is a significant achievement for the 21-year-old who has already made a mark for herself in the tennis world. Her strife to improve is relentless and always credits those who have rendered support to her without letting her own skills and work ethic be underrated. She has also raised her voice to support Ukrainians in their fight to protect their homeland.
Swiatek made waves by becoming the youngest woman to claim the French Open title in 2020 since Monica Seles did it in 1992. Since then, the Pole has moved from strength to strength, winning the same in 2022 and 2023, the US Open in 2022 and even reaching the world no. 1 in WTA rankings.
To achieve what she has done with the restricted resources she had is quite an incredible achievement and has given hope to the next generation to emulate the same. For a person who has advocated for the importance of mental health, she has set the benchmark for attaining great heights through hard work and determination.
💯I have never thought that something like this will happen to me. Thank you @TIME for this incredible honor and recognition. And thank you @MikaelaShiffrin for your words. It means a lot.🙏🏼https://t.co/2gXozOd5mb
— Iga Świątek (@iga_swiatek) April 13, 2023
Iga Swiatek, who was moved, thanked TIME for this gesture and felt that she was truly honored by this recognition. She also acknowledged the words of praise that Mikaela Shiffrin had for her and said that, it meant a lot to her.