So for the second straight big tournament, it's an Elena-Aryna final. Ominous for the rest of the tour.
Regarding the SF, I do believe Iga was injured, and that it effected her response to Elena. Having said that, I think Elena playing like that would have won anyway, if by a smaller margin. And Elena knows that too, she's been playing with confidence this year. She said her final at the AO was an affirmation for her of her abilities.
Regarding what Laura Robson said, I think what the players in the locker room will have learned is that Iga is beatable by some players, especially when not at 100%, but that BBB players Elena and Aryna are playing at yet another level atm, and when playing like this they can beat anyone. And instead of there being one largely unbeatable player at the top, there are now 3. So not good news, you now have to hope that you don't meet either of those 3 in the early rounds, lol.
A poster in GM said on that match thread that all the players have to do is play like Elena to beat Iga. Lol, easier said than done. Obviously Elena, and Aryna, have physical attributes that make playing like them impossible for most players, they're just physically incapable of hitting balls at that pace and depth, let alone also with that accuracy. And if they try they will hit a boatload of UEs and injure themselves.
But while they may not be able to match BBBs for pace, I think for players like Emma can try other things like ball placement in the corners and lines, and be quicker about the court, disrupt the opponent's rhythm by mixing it up and cast doubt into their heads, a similar approach to what Krejcikova has, then I think they can be competitive with them. Emma is smart enough to figure out a way.
They can also maintain hope knowing that a player cannot play their best level every match. Elena said that SF match was maybe the best of her career. So she won't be playing that well every match.
But they have been dominant at IW: Babs was the only player to take Sabs to 3 sets at this IW. Muchova was the only player to take Elena to 3 sets, I did not see either match, but I've watched Babs beat Iga twice over the last 6 months.
It's going to be very interesting to see how young players, like Emma and Coco, respond, or if we're heading into the era of the Big 3 (Aryna, Elena, Iga) in the WTA, with Babs a 4th to worry about? I liked Emma's comments after her match, recognizing that she has a lot of work to do in trying to get to Iga's level of fitness but that with work she can become one of the best athletes on tour. That she recognizes this gives me great hope, and we know she has the smarts to figure things out in her tennis. Assuming Emma can stay healthy, it's going to be fun watching her develop and following her journey! Go Emma!