Four Reasons Why Petra Kvitova Will Win 2018 French Open
Petra Kvitova is unquestionably the WTA’s in-form player. She has four titles to her name in 2018 (including back-to-back wins in Prague and Madrid) and 11 match wins on the trot (30 overall in 2018), which is a tour best on the women’s circuit this year, according to data from WTATennis.com.
Kvitova trails current Porsche Leader on the Road to Singapore Caroline Wozniacki by a mere 38 points. Nearly a year ago to the day, the Czech woman made an emotional return to the tour at the 2017 French Open following a knife attack at her apartment in the Czech Republic during the festive season in December 2016. Kvitova suffered a career-threatening injury on her dominant left hand, which required surgery that lasted four hours to repair damaged tendons on her fingers and thumb, and she barely had any hope of picking up a tennis racket again. Kvitova still suffers from nerve damage on her hand, but she has shown incredible mental fortitude to get back to the tennis court, much to the amazement of her surgeon and those who had written her off (including myself).
While the WTA can be so unpredictable–sometimes in every Major you get the feeling any of the top 20 players can win, with upsets along the way, as evident from Jelena Ostapenko’s pulsating win over Simona Halep at last year’s edition of the French Open–I have been awestruck by Kvitova’s achievements over the last 12 months, and looking at the names, only Elina Svitolina stands out as the other consistent performer this year. But I just feel Kvitova will have seven faultless matches in French capital. I believe Kvitova has got the power game, big match experience, and momentum heading to the second Grand Slam of the year.
Here are four reasons why Kvitova will be lifting the Coupe Suzanne Lenglen on final Saturday in Paris.
The in-form player on the WTA tour
It is true that on women’s tour, form goes out of the window on any match-up. Favorites don’t always win and it kind of feels like a coin toss, but Kvitova has been sweeping past her opponents of late and she has all the momentum on her side. Rafael Nadal once said that tennis is all about confidence and momentum. This is all portrayed in ball striking. Kvitova must have gazillions of confidence at the minute.
Did you know Kvitova’s 30 wins and four titles in 2018 are the most by any player on the WTA Tour so far?
Grand Slam winner
Petra Kvitova has already been at the business end of Major championships. With two Wimbledon titles to her name (two absolutely domineering performances in the Wimbledon finals 2011 and 2014), she will be unfazed by the challenge of another finals appearance in a Grand Slam. Having said that, her best showing at the Franch capital was a semifinal in 2012, which must feel like a pretty long time ago. But she has won three titles in the clay courts of Madrid (the first and only woman to do so), she has the ability to outhit her opponents, and her serves are precise. The only downside to this is that she runs the risk of getting complacent.
Top seeds struggling for form and fitness
Kvitova for me, along with Elina Svitolina, is the favorite to lift the French Open this year. The likes of Simona Halep, Grabine Muguruza, the reigning French Open Champion Jelena Ostapenko have been below par. Caroline Wozniacki has struggled to maintain her brilliant start to the year too. This puts Kvitova in a very strong position to claim her 3rd Major title.
Did you know that Petra Kvitova is on an 11-match winning streak? It’s the second time she has achieved that this year.
Rome withdrawal could be a masterstroke
Following her marathon three set victory over Kiki Bertens in the Madrid final, Kvitova subsequently withdrew from the Rome event–which was won by Svitolina, who defeated Halep in the final in straight sets. That decision could pay off big time. She will now have two weeks of sufficient rest. A fresh Kvitova is not one you want to meet. No one will want to face Kvitova at any stage of the tournament.
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