Kvitova triumphs in battle of the Czechs

Twice Wimbledon champion wins Sydney International event with a straight-sets win ahead of the Australia Open.

    Kvitova has won two Grand Slams - both at Wimbledon [Getty Images]
    Kvitova has won two Grand Slams - both at Wimbledon [Getty Images]

    Petra Kvitova completed her preparations for an assault on a third grand slam title in triumphant style by downing fellow Czech Karolina Pliskova 7-6 7-6 to win the Sydney International title.

    It was a contest every bit as close as the scoreline would suggest with the two Czech six-footers pounding the ball off the flexicushion surface at each other for one hour and 51 minutes.

    Pliskova gave as good as she got but the world number four's superior second serve and greater experience of playing key moments in big matches got her over the line.

    "I'm just glad how I played today," the twice Wimbledon champion said. "I mean, it was a very tough match to really handle everything. Two tiebreakers, it's always very difficult. Karolina played really well and she served very well and was really difficult."

    Kvitova will take a big confidence boost into next week's Australian Open, where she reached the semi-finals three years ago and will face a qualifier in the first round.

    "It's nice to come into grand slam with a trophy and with a little bit of confident from the matches what I had," the 24-year-old said.

    "But it's tennis, and every week is just different. I go to Melbourne tomorrow and I need to forget about the Sydney trophy to be ready and focused for Melbourne."

    SOURCE: Reuters


    Why some African Americans are moving to Africa

    Escaping systemic racism: Why I quit New York for Accra

    African-Americans are returning to the lands of their ancestors as life becomes precarious and dangerous in the USA.

    Why Jerusalem is not the capital of Israel

    Why Jerusalem is not the capital of Israel

    No country in the world recognises Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

    North Korea's nuclear weapons: Here is what we know

    North Korea's nuclear weapons