Top-ranked Iga Swiatek was upset by Barbora Krejcikova 6-4, 6-2 in the final of the Dubai Championships on Saturday.
Krejcikova closed the tournament by beating the top three players in the WTA rankings: No. 3 Jessica Pegula in the quarterfinals, No. 2 Aryna Sabalenka in the semifinals, then Swiatek. No. 8 Daria Kasaktina was also overcome in the second round.
The Czech is the fifth woman in the Open era to beat the world’s top three at the same event.
“It’s a big achievement and I think it’s going to give me a lot of confidence that I can play with the best ones,” Krejcikova said.
The former French Open champion dominated the final, breaking Swiatek five times. The Pole earned two breaks back in the first set, but Krejcikova then played out a love break and held to love for the set.
In the second, she broke for 2-1 and 5-2 and easily held serve to win her sixth singles title.
“I showed my best tennis this week,” Krejcikova said. “I was able to play my tennis but also hold the nerves.”
Her previous title was in October, when she beat Swiatek for the first time in the Ostrava final.
“When you play with Iga, you have to suffer, otherwise you’re not going to win because she’s everywhere,” she said. “She plays great shots. She likes to play long rallies. So you have to suffer. I don’t mind that.”
In polar opposite stages of their career, the countrymen Yannik Paul and Marcel Siem are just one stroke apart at the top of the leaderboard at a course that has seen one of the top 3 starting the final round usually emerge victorious.