It was a historic week of Polish sport with skiers Mikaela Shiffrin winning the overall World Cup title, the most coveted prize in ski racing, and Iga Swiatek cling the 2022 Indian Wells title.
Swiatek ended a dominant run at the BNP Paribas Open with a loss Maria Sakkari in the final. She reached another milestone with the matching Agnieska Radwanska as the highest-ranked Polish tennis player in history. Whereas it was a salvation for Shiffrin, who is considered one of the best skiers and holds the record for most World Cup slalom victories – 47. She had a dismal one Olympics 2022 where she failed to win a title after competing in all disciplines in Beijing as a gold medal favorite. In these turbulent times, Iga Swiatek sent Shiffrin a warm message and words of encouragement for the two-time Olympic champion. Shiffrin and Switaek share a special bond and admiration for one another, despite not having met in person.
It’s a wonder how these two players had similar trajectories in their early careers. Similar to Swiatek, Shiffrin burst onto the scene as a teenager, clinching a podium at the World Championships aged 16 and topping the charts at 17. While Swiatek made history at the 2020 French Open by becoming the youngest singles champion since Maria Sharapova In 2004, Shiffrin became the youngest skier to win the slalom in Olympic history Games of Sochi 2014.
“Dream comes true”: Iga Swiatek on her friendship with Mikaela Shiffrin
Shiffrin and Swiatek connected on Instagram Live in 2021 after the WTA pro expressed her desire to be friends with Shiffrin. “It would be a dream come true,” she said recently, and now it has become a reality for Swiatek. Shiffrin, who also had the unique experience of being a teenage champion, had invaluable advice for her younger compatriot.
“But I would also watch how she finds space and time even when she’s playing a point. How when she does her best, even when she’s frantic, she never comes across as “rushed.” This anticipation of what is about to happen while fully immersed in the present moment is a crucial skill. She seems like nobody can stop her. That’s really powerful.” She praised her compatriot.
Swiatek had a wet season last year, the Pole was stable but couldn’t match the heights of her triumph at Roland Garros. Similarly, Shiffrin went through a rough patch after a barren run at the Beijing Olympics. But it’s been an arc of redemption for the duo lately, with Swiatek winning back-to-back titles in recent weeks and Shiffrin making amends with a World Cup overall title.
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