Last-minute Change Of Plan Key To Petra Kvitova’s Australian Open Surge - UBITENNIS
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Last-minute Change Of Plan Key To Petra Kvitova’s Australian Open Surge

The former world No.1 and her mentor believes a decision made earlier this month was a blessing in disguise.

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Petra Kvitova’s winning run at this year’s Australian Open has been aided her the decision to miss one of the lead-up tournaments to the event, according to her coach Jiri Vanek.

 

The two-time Wimbledon champion is through to the quarter-finals in Melbourne after fighting back to defeat Greece’s Maria Sakkari 6-7(4), 6-3, 6-2, on Sunday. The rollercoaster encounter saw the Czech player drop her serve at the start of the first two sets before she found her footing on the court. Although it was far from perfect performance from Kvitova, who hit a total of 46 unforced errors compared to 33 winners. Furthermore, she was also fragile behind her second serve as she could only win 39% of the points.

“I think from the beginning, there were a lot of nerves out there. I didn’t feel the best. I was just too tight and everything was flying somewhere.” Kvitova reflected during her press conference.
“As the time went on I got used to (the match) and I started to play a little bit better, more free.”
“At the end of the day was about fighting spirit in a way. Even I didn’t play the best, Maria played really great tennis, and it was nice to share court with her.” She added.

Besides taking on Sakkari on the court, Kvitova also had to contend with an animated crowd. The Greek fans were out in full force with numerous cheers and chanting erupting. Although the seventh seed insisted that she was not intimidated by it.

“When I was shaking the hand with the umpire, I told him it was like a soccer match today.” She said.
“It’s nice on one side. On the other side, it’s tennis, and not a Fed Cup (tie).”

Kvitova, who was runner-up to Naomi Osaka in the tournament last year, is through to the quarter-finals in Melbourne for only the fourth time in her career. Prior to Sakkari, she also scored straight sets wins over Paula Badosa, Kateřina Siniaková and Ekaterina Alexandrova earlier in the week.

Assessing Kvitova’s performance so far, coach Vanek believes her recent withdrawal from the Adelaide International was a blessing in disguise.

“This year she has started pretty good the season. In Brisbane she made the semifinal. Lost a close match to Madison (Keys). We decided to take the rest a little bit and prepare her for the Melbourne. So I’m happy for her that it worked pretty well here.” He said.

The next challenge for the Czech comes in the shape of either world No.1 Ash Barty or Alison Riske. Two players she has lost to on a hard court during the 2019 season (Barty three times and Riske once). However, her team insists that she is under no pressure to match her run to the final of the event last year.

“The pressure doesn’t change, I don’t think. But we are not talking about it. She’s taking it just match after match and we just looking who is the other opponent, and that’s it.” Vanek stated.

Kvitova is just one out of four top 10 players left in the women’s draw. She is bidding to become the first Czech player to win the Australian Open since Hana Mandlíková In 1987, who represented the former Czechoslovakia.

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Angelo Binaghi: “The Internazionali BNL d’Italia could be held in September. It is a better period than May”

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Italian Tennis Federation President Angelo Binaghi said in an interview to Italian tennis channel Supertennis that he was confident that the 2020 edition of the Internazionali BNL d’Italia could take place next September as a tune-up for the French Open. The ATP Masters and the WTA Premier Masters was originally scheduled from 11th to 17th May, but it was called off because of the coronavirus pandemic.

 

“Barring major upheavels, I think that we are going to reorganise the Internazionali BNL d’Italia in September, between the middle and the end of the month. They tell me, especially the Romans, that it is an extraordinary season, the best time to play tennis. September could be better than May, when the tournament is traditionally held. Tennis is the safest sport at the time of the coronavirus pandemic. Our sport has some advantage compared to team sports. This summer we will hold the National Championhsips after many years”, said Binaghi.  

Binaghi said that he would meet Italian Sports Minister Vincenzo Spadafora to discuss about the possibility to attend the tournament.

Italian tennis will celebrate the 10th anniversary of Francesca Schiavone’s win at Roland Garros in 2010.

“Schiavone’s win was a big surprise. Italian tennis was not ready for this triumph. It was a big step forward, that made us aware that we could achieve any kind of result. It marked the start of a golden period for Italian tennis”.

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Dominic Thiem, Alexander Zverev, Nick Kyrgios and Jannik Sinner set to play in Berlin exhibition tournament

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Berlin is set to host an exhibition tournament in two parts. Twelve players will take part in this tournament, that will consist in two parts. The first part will take place on grass between 13th and 15th July. The second part will be held on hard court in a hangar near the closed Tempelhof Airport between 17th and 19th July.

 

The men’s tournament will feature 2018 ATP Finals champion Alexander Zverev, this year’s Australian Open Dominic Thiem, Nick Kyrgios and 2019 Next Gen ATP Finals Jannik Sinner.

Two-time Rome champion Elina Svitolina, Kiki Bertens, Julia Goerges and Andrea Petkovic have signed up to play in the women’s tournament.

The matches will be played behind closed doors. A super tie-break will replace the third set. There will be no electronic lines calls with no line judges to reduce the number of people on the court. The exhibition event will replace a WTA tournament in Berlin, which was scheduled on June, but it was cancelled.

A total prize money of 200000 Euros will be available.

 

 

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Injury Scare Fails To Derail Petra Kvitova From Winning ‘Bizarre’ All-Czech Tennis Event

The world No.12 speaks out about the unusual circumstances she was playing in earlier this week as she sheds light on a recent injury issue she has been dealing with.

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During what was meant to be the first week of the French Open Petra Kvitova is still winning matches albeit in very different circumstances.

 

With professional tennis still halted due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the two-time Wimbledon champion was one of the headline acts at the CTS President’s Cup earlier this week. A Three-day event that features eight men and eight women taking part in a all-Czech tournament. Umpires and ball boys had to wear face masks and there was limited spacing for spectators to watch from the sidelines with organizers mindful of social distancing.

“The gloves, face masks, the fact nobody handed us the towels, no handshakes, that was definitely bizarre,” said Kvitova.
“And playing without people, the atmosphere was not exactly what we are used to.”

Despite the unusual circumstances, it failed to prevent Kvitova for winning the event on Thursday. During a rain-interrupted final she saw off Wimbledon quarter-finalist Karolina Muchova 6-3, 6-3. Earlier in the event she also scored wins over former world No.1 doubles player Kateřina Siniaková (7-5, 6-4) and Barbora Krejčíková (7-6, 6-2).

The trio of victories came only days after there was concern if Kvitova would be able to play at all. Leading into the tournament the Czech started to feel pain in her forearm, but was later given the all clear by her doctor. Speaking to reporters, she said the pain she felt was similar to what occurred this time last year when she was forced to withdraw from the French Open.

“Two days before the start of the tournament, my forearm started to stiffen, similar to last year before the French Open,” the 30-year-old explained.
“That’s why I didn’t train on Monday. I was waiting for Mr. Kolář’s verdict, but he said that I would be able to do it (play) in some way.”

Now her first taste of competitive tennis in over three months has concluded, Kvitova has relished the experience. It is still unclear as to when the WTA Tour will resume. At present the suspension is until July 31st. In recent days both the US Open and French Open have said they are optimistic that their events will be able to go ahead later this year in some capacity.

“Given the circumstances and the pandemic, it was a wonderful tournament,” Kvitova stated.

Whilst officials ponder when to restart the sport, Kvitova plans to take some time resting her hand in order to prevent aggravating it further.

“I’ll definitely feel my hand for a few days now, but I’ll take time off, there’s no hurry,” she concluded.

In the men’s final world No.450 Michael Vrbensky, who shocked top seed Jiri Vesely in the first round, won the title.

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