Aryna Sabalenka accomplishes what John McEnroe felt she ‘despeteraly’ needed
© Getty Images Sport – Elsa
Aryna Sabalenka is set to become the new world No 1 and it happened just after John McEnroe suggested the Belarusian “desperately” needed that to happen so the Belarusian would finally have people stop asking her about the possibility of overtaking Iga Swiatek at the top spot.
After becoming a Grand Slam champion at this year’s Australian Open, Sabalenka returned to her career-high ranking of No 2 in the world. In the next couple of months, Sabalenka a couple of times missed out on overtaking Swiatek at the world No 1 spot and she was constantly getting asked about it.
But next Monday, 25-year-old Sabalenka will finally become the new world No 1. “I think she can’t help but think about it because people bring it up. I think she was a match away at Roland Garros, if she had won that semi-final match that could have put her temporarily at No 1.
Her and Iga [Swiatek] have been going back and forth for quite a while in terms of the rankings. She’s desperate to try and get over the hump and finally at least call herself at some point the No 1 ranked player in the world.
It would be absolutely amazing,” McEnroe told Eurosport before Swiatek lost to Jelena Ostapenko in the US Open round-of-16 and Sabalenka learned she would become the new world No 1 next Monday. Aryna Sabalenka and Iga Swiatek© Getty Images Sport – Clive Brunskill
McEnroe says it would be ‘absolutely amazing’ for Sabalenka to become No 1
When the 2023 season started, 25-year-old Sabalenka had two major goals she wanted to accomplish – become a Grand Slam champion in singles and also reach the world No 1 spot for the first time in her career.
In the first month of the season, Sabalenka accomplished one of her two biggest goals. Now, Sabalenka has put an icing on the cake on her 2023 season as she has also accomplished her second biggest goal. “Considering where she was a couple of years ago when she had the yips, and you’re wondering if she could ever get that serve together, I think it’s amazing what Sabalenka has done.
Winning the Australian Open, she feels so much more confident and believes in herself now. You can feel it,” McEnroe said.