Martina Navratilova has some harsh words for Iga Swiatek

(Photo by Diego Souto/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)
(Photo by Diego Souto/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images) /

Recently, a former player said it was “trendy” for fans to dislike Novak Djokovic. I personally don’t see any reason for people to dislike Djokovic, despite how one feels about his vaccination status. But WTA number 1 Iga Swiatek also seems to get her share of disrespect. And this week, all-time great Martina Navratilova jumped all over something Swiatek had to say.

So much for players being honest about how they feel, I guess. After Swiatek lost to Coco Gauff in the semifinals of the Western and Southern Open, Swiatek told reporters that her “tank of fuel is pretty empty.” She even went on to say, “I’m happy that I’m going to have days off now…” and that she wasn’t overly disappointed by the loss to Gauff.

I can see where many professional athletes might have had an issue with Swiatek not feeling overly disappointed by a loss late in a tournament, but that she said she was tired on the court? That seems an odd thing to have a problem with. But Navratilova did.

Martina Navratilova appears to disrespect Iga Swiatek

Navratilova told the AP that she used to play several tournaments between Wimbledon and the US Open and she was very rarely tired. She stated, “I would be tired after the US Open but not before the US Open.”

And after saying she understood that Swiatek had to play the Warsaw Open because Swiatek is Polish, Navratilova added, “But I still have to say, ‘Come on, just suck it up’. It’s September, you didn’t play that many tournaments and this is the US Open. So if you can’t get up for that…if you’re that mentally tired, don’t play.”

Ouch. Of course, if Iga Swiatek were to say she wasn’t going to play the US Open she would be even more criticized for that. A player like Swiatek just can’t win by being honest. It should be noted that Swiatek didn’t say she was too tired to do well at the US Open.

Swiatek just seems to get picked on more than other former world number 1s did. During the last point of a match at the Western and Southern Open, she was called for a delay even though the pace of the match had been the same throughout. Post-match her complaint to the chair umpire seemed to be treated with arrogance.

Navratilova is an 18-time Grand Slam champion. She has every right to speak her peace. But having an issue with Swiatek’s honesty just appears to come across callously.

John McEnroe has strong views on Djokovic, Alcaraz, and Swiatek. dark. Next