Saturday 23 February 2013

Dubai Champion 2013- Petra Kvitova (Kvitova d. Errani)

Petra Kvitova was the favourite as she walked on to the court to face Sara Errani in the Dubai title match.
For the first 5 games of the match it was all about Petra Kvitova as she won four of the first five games. Cracks begin to show as Kvitova served to move ahead 5-1, as she double faulted twice in that game and was broken by Errani, but that was all Errani could do in the first set, as Kvitova broke right away to win the first set 6-2.

Kvitova hit 19 winners in the first set against only one winner from Errani.

Second set started in the similar way with Kvitova breaking Errani to move ahead, but from then on, Kvitova showed why she is so unpredictable as she went from winners hitting machine in the first set to error strewn machine in the second set. However, it was a change of tactics from Errani that caused the panic and made Kvitova miss everything. Errani started rushing to the net and taking the ball very early to take time off from Kvitova, the tactic went well as Errani went on tear and won 6 straight games to win the set 6-1 and level the match at one set a piece.

Kvitova hit 9 winners in the second set against Errani's 8 winners.

It seemed like the momentum will stay Errani's way as Kvitova was unable to answer Errani at net. Kvitova took a break after the second set and returned to start the third set. Both players held serve to start the set. A crucial moment for Kvitova came in the 3rd game as she found herself down 0-40 on her own serve, however, Kvitova petrafied Errani, as she hit a big serve and 2 winners to get to deuce, and then held her serve. Drama unfolded in the very next service game, as Errani was up 30-15 on her serve, Kvitova's forehand went long, a call came from the line-person, Errani and Kvitova argued a little about the call as to what exactly the call was about, chair umpire called the line person who said it was a correction call. Errani challenged and won the challenge and went up 40-15 on her serve, but that was all from her as the she lost her focus completely from there on, losing 10 straight sets to go down 1-4.  Errani was broken again as Kvitova went up 5-1 and held her serve to win the title 62 16 61.

In winning the title, Kvitova becomes the first player from Czech Republic to win Dubai title.

In the final set, Kvitova hit 18 winners against only one winner from Errani.

Petra Kvitova wins her 10th career title and her first title since New Haven last year. Another good news for Kvitova is that she will move switch rankings with Errani and will move a spot up to world no. 7.

The match had everything, excellent clean hitting from Petra Kvitova and some really good serve and volley tactic from Sara Errani and then of-course some drama in the third set. Kvitova in the end proved too good, but all the credit to Errani who never gave up despite losing the first set 6-2.

Kvitova's coach has not been here with her in Dubai and when asked about this in on-court interview Kvitova said, "He is on vacation, I hope he is happy. Sometimes it is good to just go out there by yourself and think about your game plan yourself."

Kvitova credited Errani, "I mean she is very good mover, she can catch a lot of balls. She was going for the net a lot and that was problem for me."

"I thought it was a so tough match. It was up and down. I think I stayed focused and calm and tried my best."

Kvitova seems to be rounding into form at the right time, after a very dis-appointing start to the year. However, whether she has really returned into form will be evident in Indain Wells and Miami where Kvitova has really struggled in the past. A good thing to note is that, before this year Kvitova had not won a match in Dubai, but went all the way to the title this year, this may be a good omen for her for good things to come. Only time can tell us.

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