Petra Kvitova, the world’s number four tennis player, took little time and effort in winning the Madrid Open.
BBC is reporting that after Kvitova dispatched world’s number one player Serena Williams in a rather listless match, 6-2, 6-3, Kvitova dominated Svetlana Kuznetsova in straight sets, 6-1, 6-2, to win her second Madrid Masters Open. Her first Madrid Open win was back in 2011.
Kvitova, a 25-year-old Czechoslovakian, dominated Kuznetsova in winning the title in just 67 minutes. Kuznetsova seemed to be having medical issues throughout the match. In between the first and second sets, Kuznetsova took a medical time out, returned to the court with her left thigh heavily bandaged, and then immediately dropped serve. The 29-year-old could not find an answer to Kvitova’s powerful hitting.
“I feel very happy,” said Wimbledon champion Kvitova. “I’m really glad that I won for the second time here.”
Kvitova blazed through the first set in less than 30 minutes, her booming serves and returns always far beyond Kuznetsova’s reach.
Kvitova broke serve in both the opening game and the third game of the second set, taking control. Though Kuznetsova held serve in games five and seven, the damage had already been done.
According to Sports Illustrated, Kvitova has come a long way this year. Constantly fighting her asthma, and other illnesses, Kvitova is a player who could easily lose in the early rounds of a tournament. But despite her condition, Kvitova still continues to prove herself in the court, with a 16-5 record this year and 2-0 in Wimbledon for her career. At the beginning of the season, Kvitova hired Alex Stober, a new physio coach (who until her retirement, worked for Li Na), who helped Kvitova become much stronger and more durable.
Kvitova started the season strong, starting with a win at the Sydney International this year, but then began to struggle with her motivation. He coach, David Kotyza, advised her to skip two of the next major events, held in Indian Wells, California, and Miami, Florida. She did so, taking six weeks off total, and upon her return, has been 8-1.
Her Madrid Open title in 2001 foreshadowed a good effort in the 2011 French Open. Kvitova made it to the fourth round before being defeated by eventual winner Li Na, winning in three sets. Kvitova’s two clay court titles have both come in Madrid. Though she has the game to compete on clay, Madrid serves the big hitters and faster players due to a higher altitude. Kvitova has gone past the fourth round of the French Open once, making the 2012 semifinals before losing to Maria Sharapova. With her new coaching staff in place, it will be interesting to see how she does this year at the French Open.
[Image courtesy of Julian Kinney/Fox Sports]