Iga Swiatek reaches first US Open final, will face fifth seed Ons Jabeur
By Mike Ehrmann
Updated Feb 1, 2008 12:01 AM
GARDEN CITY, N.Y. — With his fifth different U.S. Open final in the last seven years and his fourth in the last six months, Iga Swiatek was just happy on Thursday. To be in the final four with his dad, his uncle and Andy Roddick was not just good for him, it was an exciting moment in his life.
Swiatek and a group of family and friends were on the seventh and eighth tee boxes during the first round of the men’s final. By the time he reached the eighth tee he had played 12 holes in five hours. He found himself facing a long four-hour drive from his home in the Czech Republic to his father’s house in Southern California. This, he said he wouldn’t miss.
Swiatek, of South Orange, Calif., hit a perfect tee shot for his first birdie as a professional, and was playing in his second major championship. His best amateur finish was second at the 2002 Olympic Gold Medalist championship. He said he was happy to be playing in a major.
“This is it. It’s the last major I want to win. I’ll try to enjoy it this weekend, come Sunday,” he said through a grin. “I have nothing more to say. It’s time to get ready for Sunday, and I’ll leave it all in the gallery.”
Iga and his father are expecting their fourth child this year, and their first in a year. They met when Iga was about 10. Since then, in addition to his son, he’s given birth to two daughters, one of whom had brain surgery at birth.
It’s tough to describe his father’s joy at watching his son play in an ultimate challenge.