Iga Swiatek won the longest set of her career on Saturday to defeat Elena Rybakina 7-6 (8), 6-2 and claim the WTA Doha title for a third consecutive year.

The world No. 1 Pole needed 90 minutes to battle from 4-1 double-break down in the opening set against 2022 champion Rybakina, securing an opener featuring six breaks of serve.

Swiatek won the 18th title of her career in challenging windy conditions in the Gulf, saving a Rybakina set point late in the tiebreaker.

Rybakina needed a medical timeout after accidentally scraping her leg with her racquet and drawing blood.

Once she had secured the marathon opener on a fourth set point, Swiatek reverted to form and swept the second set to complete the victory.

The top seed is the first woman to win a WTA event three consecutive times since Serena Williams won Miami in 2013, 2014, and 2015

Rybakina had won her previous three matches against Swiatek and already owns two trophies in 2024.

“I never knew that it’s so special to win three times in a row,” Swiatek said. 

“But I would say that it happens when you actually don’t know about it.

“I don’t aim to break any records. I’m just playing tennis, and that’s all.”

After going out in the Australian Open third round, the top seed came to Doha with confidence shaken.

“I thought I’m gonna lose here in the second round, I wasn’t feeling really confident before the tournament. 

“I didn’t also have some peaceful time at home to just focus on working, so I wasn’t really expecting a lot.

“But it felt like if you’re going to give 100 percent and work hard, good things may come.” 

Main photo:- Iga Swiatek celebrates victory – by WTATennis.com