Decoding the incredible run of Aryna Sabalenka in 2021
World number two Aryna Sabalenka is set to open her US Open campaign against Serbia's Nina Stojanovic. The 23-year-old recently lost to Paula Badosa at the Western and Southern Open in Cincinnati. Earlier this year, the Belarusian reached the semi-final at Wimbledon. Sabalenka, who is still in pursuit of her maiden Grand Slam title, would want to fare well at the US Open.
A look at her career stats
Sabalenka has a career record of 262-132, which includes 10 singles titles. She is 21-15 at Grand Slams. Her best result at a major came this year when she qualified for the Wimbledon semi-final. She has won a total of six matches in the grass-court tournament (6-4). Sabalenka is yet to go past the fourth round at Australian Open, US Open, and French Open.
Maiden Grand Slam semi-final
Sabalenka reached her maiden Grand Slam semi-final at Wimbledon by defeating 21st seed Ons Jabeur in straight sets. She became the third Belarusian woman to do so after Natasha Zvereva in 1998 and Victoria Azarenka in 2011 and 2012.
Sabalenka won in Abu Dhabi and Madrid
In May, Sabalenka captured her maiden WTA clay-court title by winning the Mutua Madrid Open. She defeated world number one Ashleigh Barty 6-0, 3-6, 6-4 in the final. This was her second trophy of the season after she won in Abu Dhabi in January. The win in Abu Dhabi had extended her winning streak to 15 matches. Sabalenka was also the runner-up in Stuttgart.
Sabalenka displaces Naomi Osaka at number two
Recently, Sabalenka displaced Japan's Naomi Osaka at number two in the WTA Rankings. Sabalenka became the 39th woman to be in the Top 2 in the WTA rankings history. He position in the WTA Rankings is the second best for a Belarusian after former world number one Azarenka. If Sabalenka continues her run, she could become the 28th woman to be ranked first.
An opportunity to win maiden Grand Slam title
Sabalenka has a win-loss record of 38-14 in the season. The upcoming US Open gives her an opportunity to claim her maiden Grand Slam title. She reached the fourth round in 2018, where she was defeated by Osaka. This remains her best run in the tournament so far. In the last two editions, Sabalenka was knocked out in the second round.