World No.1 Iga Swiatek admitted to feeling a different kind of pressure as she prepares for the AGEL Open in Ostrava, Czech Republic, her first tournament since winning the US Open. The WTA 500-level event is held at the Ostravar Arena, just 10 miles south of the Polish border, giving the tournament a familiar feel for Swiatek, who made the semifinals last year.

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"It was pretty fun because basically most of the people in the stands were Polish so I feel like I'm at home," Swiatek said at Media Day in Ostrava. "I really like that it's so calm here because after cities like New York it's good to come to a place you can really rest here."

"Maybe my friends going to come, but only if I make it to the semifinals. So I'm under pressure."

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Swiatek is keen to keep things as simple and quiet as possible this week. She is in Ostrava without coach Tomasz Wiktorowski, opting to give her team a longer break before her final season-ending push in the U.S., where she will finish her season at San Diego, California, and the WTA Finals in Fort Worth, Texas. 

"We did something like that in Dubai and Stuttgart," Swiatek said. "We already have our routines. He is always available. We're going to still do some work in terms of preparation for the match and tactic-wise. 

"I feel it's good for them to stay at home a little bit longer and be more fresh for our trip to the U.S."

After New York, Swiatek finally had time to rest and reflect on her gritty US Open title run.

"It gave me the feeling I can win in any conditions," Swiatek said. "Even though I'm not feeling perfectly, I can still perform well and put pressure on my opponents."

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But after a full week of rest, Swiatek was back on the practice courts in Warsaw to prepare for the last six weeks of her season.
"The conditions [in Warsaw] are similar to what we have here. This tournament could be tough because I haven't played any matches in three weeks. And coming back after winning a Grand Slam is always tricky. But tennis-wise I feel that I'm ready."

Swiatek has a first-round bye and will face either Zhang Shuai or Ajla Tomljanovic in the second round. 

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