中文
 
    NEWS
            
 

CAN KVITOVA WIN THE FRENCH OPEN?

2015-5-19


PARIS, France - A month ago she wasn't really in the conversation when it came to French Open favorites, having taken a month off from the tour and then losing her first match of the clay court season in Stuttgart. But then came Madrid - she went all the way to the title, handing Serena Williams her first loss of the year, and now Petra Kvitova is definitely in the conversation - at the forefront, even.

That loss in her opening match at the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix in Stuttgart - in straight sets, to Madison Brengle - seemed to be something of an awakening for Kvitova, who opened up afterwards.

"I knew it was going to be difficult," she said. "It really didn't matter who was on the other side. The first match on clay, whether or not I had a break, is always difficult. Madison played a solid match, but when I had the opportunities to make good shots for winners, I was missing them from the beginning.

"You need to be physically ready, and you need to be patient, and I'm going to work on that."

After a week of practice, it was there - she was physically ready, she was patient, she wasn't missing those opportunities for winners. She looked better and better match by match at the Mutua Madrid Open, and by the time she got to the semifinals she looked unstoppable, stopping the previously unstoppable Williams, 6-2, 6-3, before routing Svetlana Kuznetsova in the title match, 6-1, 6-2.

Not only did she snap the World No.1's 27-match streak, which dated back to the BNP Paribas WTA Finals Singapore presented by SC Global, she now had the biggest lead-up title to the French Open.

The Czech feels the conditions in Madrid are similar to those in Paris - a good omen...

"Paris has really good courts for me, and good tennis balls that still fly like they do in Madrid," she said. "It's not as high altitude as Madrid, but I like the conditions there and I will try my best of course."

And the only other time she won in Madrid, in 2011, she may have come pretty close at the French - she gave eventual champion Li Na her closest call of the tournament in the fourth round, looking headed for victory up 3-0 in the third before the Chinese came roaring back with six games in a row.

Li didn't drop a set the rest of the way - if she had beaten Li, could that have been Kvitova's fate?

She's downplaying any talk of being the favorite in the French capital, though.

"No, for sure I'm not feeling like the favorite for the French Open right now," she said in Madrid.

"I had a great run here, for sure, but the French Open's different. I was in the semifinals there once, so I know I can play well there, but I still need more belief. I should believe more now that I have this trophy in Madrid, but there are a lot of great players who can really peak at the French Open."



back