One of four players in with a shot of the World No.1 after this tournament, Petra Kvitova will seek to move closer to that with a strong run at the French Open. The Czech has not had a great time at the event in the past with just one fourth round spot in the past 6 years. She faces Sorana Cirstea in her opener on Suzanne Lenglen.
As a highly touted youngster, Cirstea made the quarter finals of Roland Garros not long after turning 19. It remains her career best run at a slam with the Romanian failing to reign in her power hitting enough for a consistent set of results on many occasions since. However, she will be pleased with her final warmup tournament – making the semi finals of Nurnberg.
Kvitova will hope to be over the calf injury that ended her run in Rome, putting a dampener on a fairly decent clay season – winning Stuttgart and making the quarter finals in Madrid. She has the most wins this season and has four total finals to her name, going 2-2 in them. “So of course the clay, it’s a bit different, but still, I can do some other things, not just playing my younger Petra [game] before.” she said on what has changed, hinting that the sometimes reckless aggression in her game is to be toned down.
She will seek to extend her head to head over Cirstea to 6-2 and is highly favoured to do so. She looks a much sharper and consistent player than in the past with shock results becoming less of an occurrence. It’s difficult to list her as one of the top contenders still but if the draw breaks down and she can put it altogether, it wouldn’t be too outrageous to see her lifting a trophy in 2 weeks time. “I have been in the semifinal here one year, so I’m not questioning myself if I can do well here. So just here I’m feeling good. It’s important.” she said on the tournament.
Prediction – Petra Kvitova in straight sets