Petra Kvitova’s Miami win makes her Top 10 player again, with magical return to form

“I think I just take it very positively that I can still compete with the best”

by Veronica Bruno
Petra Kvitova’s Miami win makes her Top 10 player again, with magical return to form

The contrast between last year and this year couldn’t have been any greater for 33-year-old Petra Kvitova. Falling out of the Top 30 for the first time in over a decade, to world No. 34, almost about this time last year (May 2022), the Czech player started finding her groove again during last year’s grass season—winning her only 2022 title in Eastbourne—all the way to her ninth WTA 1000 title in Miami on Saturday.

A win in Miami had always eluded her—having never reached the semis there—but the fast court situated in the Hard Rock stadium seemed a better fit for the two-time Wimbledon champ.

Not only did Kvitova thrive during the Miami run, she thrilled during the two set final, demonstrating why she’s been labeled “the best fast-court player of her generation,” winning 7-6(14), 6-2.

Kvitova’s ball-striking had established her high-octane presence throughout the tournament, but her electrifying groundstrokes during the final with 10th seed Rybakina set the pace of the match.

Kvitova’s fearlessness was front and center during the tense tie-break, producing some of the most exciting tennis we’ve seen all year.

"The tiebreaker was going to decide the whole match,'' Kvitova said, according to ESPN.

"The tiebreaker - oh, by God - was the longest in my career. I won the tiebreaker so emotionally I was on the better side. You could see the balls after the tiebreak. They were big fluffy balls.″

The Miami championship win is Petra Kvitova’s 30th WTA title, putting her in a class almost by herself, and where she stands alone among her generation.

The only other active player to own more than her is 42-year-old Venus Williams. The WTA 1000 title is also a reminder of the kind of danger Kvitova can be during a clutch match. Some of the winners during the first set tie-break were simply breathtaking.

"I take it as a positive I can still play with the best,'' added Kvitova, who received a $1.26 million winner’s prize. "I take pride, even at my age, I could win big tournaments.' '

Petra Kvitova’s sensational win was the perfect culmination of the first portion of the hard court season.

Next up is the clay swing, but expect the new world No. 10 player to revel in her high-risk, aggressive style during the grass leg. Her two grand slams were earned at Wimbledon. A fully confident, hard-hitting Kvitova will be a formidable presence at the All England Club this year, where she’s sure to be among the top contenders for the grass grand slam.

Petra Kvitova