While men and women use the same balls everywhere else in the world, the US Open is the only Grand Slam tournament where the women play with a lighter ball. All the tournaments on the United States and Canadian swing also now use the same balls as the US Open, a change that was introduced last year.
But as one of the harder hitters on the women's circuit, Swiatek is no fan of the lighter tennis balls, which she feels negates her power and causes her to make more mistakes.
Speaking after her 6-4 7-5 win over Sloane Stephens at the Cincinnati Masters on Tuesday, Swiatek said: "We make more mistakes [with these balls], for sure, so I don't think that's really nice to watch visually. I don't know why they are different than men's ones.
— wta (@WTA) August 17, 2022
"Fifteen years ago probably women had some elbow injuries because the balls were heavier and they changed them to women's balls. But right now we are so physically well prepared that I don't think it would happen. "I feel, it's really hard to control them, but everybody has the same conditions, so we are trying to deal with that. "I think the balls are horrible, especially after like three games of really hard playing, they are getting more and more light," she added. "At the end, you can't even serve at 170km/h because it's going to fly like crazy. I think they are pretty bad." Swiatek said she and other top 10 players have discussed the issue with WTA chief executive Steve Simon before. "I know that many players complain, and many of them are top 10 [players]," she added. "Me and Paula Badosa last year talked with Steve about changing to men's balls. I don't think it would be a problem because it's still the same company. "Maybe we should push a bit more. I stopped pushing and trying to convince WTA because the war in Ukraine happened and I refocused on something else."
Swiatek will return to centre court in Cincinnati on Thursday evening to play home favourite Madison Keys for a place in the quarter-finals.
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