World No. 1 Iga Šviontek has voiced her strong disagreement with the US Open’s rule that men and women play with different balls.
In the last Grand Slam of the year, there is a difference in the balls that the men and women compete with. For the ladies, they are lighter – something that, according to Schwiontek, many female tennis players already complain about.
“We make more mistakes with these balls,” Schwiontek said after a 6-4 7-5 win over Sloane Stephens at the Cincinnati tournament.
15 years ago maybe women were suffering from some kind of elbow injuries due to the weight of the balls, which is why they invented women’s balls. But these days we are just as physically fit and I don’t think that would happen.
These balls are terrible. After three games of play, they become even lighter. In the end, you can’t serve even at 170 km/h because they fly in all directions. They are difficult to control, but these conditions are for everyone, so we will have to cope. But I really don’t understand why this difference exists.”
Lighter balls hurt more physically powerful players who rely more on the speed of their shots and not so much on technique.
Schwiontek added that “a lot of the tennis players are also not happy with the balls, a lot of the Top 10 as well,” mentioning only Paula Badosa by name.