Two-time Wimbledon victor Kvitova was stabbed at her home in December, when she was left with serious hand injuries. But she remained reluctant to agree that she was now one of the players who could win Wimbledon.
It is only Kvitova's second tournament since the seven-month hole which was torn from her career, and this was only her sixth match, yet she has reached her first grass court final since her 2014 Wimbledon triumph. She recovered from 5-3 down in the final set to beat Daria Gavrilova of Australia 6-7 (4), 6-3, 7-6 (5).
"I came to play, to improve my game; I didn't really have any expectation". Not only is Barty playing at a high level, but you have to question if fatigue or rust will catch up to Kvitova, who has so little matches under her belt. "I could not have imagined a better comeback".
Dellacqua took to social media to congratulate Barty on an incredible tournament.
"Yeah, I think it was important for us to take it step by step, and we've been getting better results the more we've played and the more we've gone on this year". 'From the first hit on the grass I felt great. "I like slicing it around on the grass, and I didn't do much wrong".
Serving for the set, the Czech suffered an attack of nerves as two double-faults enabled Barty to claw one break back, but that was not enough as Kvitova served out for the set at the second attempt. She and Casey Dellacqua won their second Aegon Classic Birmingham title (they also won in 2013) with a 6-1 2-6 10-8 win over Hao-Ching Chan (TPE) and Shaui Zhang (CHN).
The second set though was a different story as Kvitova swiftly raced into a 5-1 lead, faltering just once as she went to serve for the set, before making certain of the re-emergence of "P3tra, with a 3" and taking it into a decider.
"I've played some quality tennis and lost to only a couple of good players".
Yet the second set took a turn towards the Czech when Kvitova broke in the second game after some errors from Barty, which until that point had been largely absent from the Australian's game.
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