World No.1 Iga Swiatek extended her clay-court winning streak this spring to six with a 6-3, 6-2 win over No.29 seed Bernarda Pera on Sunday in the third round of the Mutua Madrid Open.
Thought she was a break down early in the first set, Swiatek needed just 75 minutes to dispatch Pera and move through to a fourth-round meeting with either No.16 seed Ekaterina Alexandrova, who came from a set down to beat No.22 seed Zheng Qinwen 5-7, 6-4, 6-2.
"I wouldn't say it was easy. Every match is tricky here," Swiatek said afterwards. "I'm happy that I'm getting my rhythm. Playing against a lefty is never easy ... but I'm pretty happy that I was disciplined and focused."
6⃣ straight clay court wins this season— wta (@WTA) April 30, 2023
1⃣ set dropped overall
No.1 seed @iga_swiatek picks up the win over Pera to reach the last 16, matching her best result at the @MutuaMadridOpen. pic.twitter.com/xff9th1w41
Read on for more about Swiatek's victory, by the numbers.
2: Swiatek is now 2-0 against Pera in her career. Their first meeting came four years ago, on grass in Birmingham, where Swiatek saved three match points in a 2-6, 7-6(6), 6-4 win.
6: Swiatek has now won six straight matches in her clay-court season with the loss of just one set.
7: Outside of the aforementioned love break of Swiatek's serve in the first set, Pera won just seven points in the World No.1's eight other service games in the match.
9: Swiatek is now a perfect 9-0 against Americans on clay in her career to date, and hasn't lost a set in those matches.
13: Swiatek created 13 break points against Pera's serve in victory, successfully converting on four. By contrast, Pera created just one break point against Swiatek's serve -- and did convert it.
In addition, Swiatek is now 13-1 in her last 14 matches against left-handers, losing only to Beatriz Haddad Maia in Toronto last summer.
16: Swiatek was the first player broken in the match, as Pera led 2-1 with a break in the first set. However, from that point on, Swiatek won 16 of 20 points played in the next four games to move ahead 5-2, and take a lead she'd never relinquish.
20: Twenty of Swiatek's 21 victories in 2023 have come in straight sets.
24: Swiatek now boasts 24 wins on clay in the last two years.
25: Pera racked up 25 unforced errors in defeat, nearly three times Swiatek's total of nine. Swiatek only hit four more winners than Pera (16 to 12).
1: Swiatek is 1-1 in her career vs. Alexandrova, and this will be their first meeting on clay. Alexandrova won in straight sets when the two played at the Gippsland Trophy in Melbourne last year, but Swiatek won in three sets when the pair played in Ostrava last fall.