Things continue to look good for Petra Kvitova in the bottom half of the draw with the Czech standing tall while more threats fall by the wayside. The Czech has a route to the semi finals that looks quite kind, facing Shuai Zhang for a place in the quarter-finals. Should she win that, she would play one of Laura Siegemund and Paula Badosa.
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Zhang is in her first fourth round in Paris, ending the hopes of home players in back to back matches to make it this far. They followed an impressive straight sets win in round one against Madison Keys, a player for which the conditions looked like they should favour at first. Zhang showed her fighting spirit in her win over Clara Burel, coming from 3-5 0-40 down to win in straights.
Kvitova’s inconsistencies are always going to make it hard to trust the Czech but her best level won’t be matched by many others in the tournament. It was the best and worst of her in the first set, which she fell 1-5 down before winning six straight games to take the opener in her 7-5 6-3 win. “I’m so glad that I was still there even fighting in the first set, back on the track, and I didn’t really know that I gonna turn it around,” Kvitova said in her post match-press conference. “But I was just trying to, you know, kind of came back to the set, to my game, to find a way. It was great I was still able to win the first set. I’m really glad for me that I was still there mentally.”
“She really can play well. She’s really aggressive player. I think this is how it suits her, this kind of Roland Garros. And, yeah, we have a similar style, so we know each other pretty well.” Kvitova said on Zhang, whom she holds a 3-2 head to head against. Kvitova has to be given the edge in this one, especially if it comes down to a battle of power. An error-prone performance will still leave her vulnerable to defeat but she will fancy her chances, especially if the Zhang serve continues to look weak. “I just need to take it like every point as I did today. It’s not really about tactics when you play somebody who is really hitting hard. So I need to hit it hard, as well.”
Prediction – Petra Kvitova in straight sets