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SportSydney International: Petra Kvitova wins thrilling Sydney International final over Ash Barty

13:55  12 january  2019
13:55  12 january  2019 Source:   sportingnews.com

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Angelique Kerber was the defending champion, but lost to Petra Kvitová in the quarterfinals. Kvitová went on to win her second title in Sydney , defeating last year's finalist Ashleigh Barty in the final , 1–6, 7–5, 7–6(7–3). The top two seeds receive a bye into the second round. Simona Halep (Second round).

Petra Kvitova has beaten Ash Barty 1-6 7-5 7-6(3) in an epic Sydney International final at Ken Rosewall Arena. © Provided by Perform Media Channels Limited. Barty opened the final in ominous form, taking just 25 minutes to win the first set, before Kvitova fought back late in the second.

Petra Kvitova has beaten Ash Barty 1-6 7-5 7-6(3) in an epic Sydney International final at Ken Rosewall Arena.

Sydney International: Petra Kvitova wins thrilling Sydney International final over Ash Barty© Provided by Perform Media Channels Limited

Barty opened the final in ominous form, taking just 25 minutes to win the first set, before Kvitova fought back late in the second.

Kvitova needed three chances to seal the win after being broken twice while serving for the match.

Up 6-5 in the third set, Kvitova's service game went to pieces as she served her eighth and ninth double faults of the match and Barty forced a tie-break.

Appearing to be suffering from cramp in the hot conditions, Kvitova was finally able to hold her nerve in the tie-break, needing just one of her three championship points to seal it.

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Petra Kvitova powered past Aliaksandra Sasnovich in a rain-delayed semifinal to set up a meeting in the Sydney International final with Ash Barty . Kvitova needed just 66 minutes to see off the Belarusian, the 6-1 6-2 win sending her through to her second Sydney final after winning the title in

Earlier in the match, Barty broke Kvitova three times in a dominant first set, including the former two-time Wimbledon champion's first two service games of the final.

As had been the case for most of the week, Barty held serve with relative ease, while a powerful forehand applied pressure and her sliced backhand dictated tempo.

Kvitova finally started making shots in the second set, but it wasn't until Barty's sixth service game that the Czech player finally earned her first break point and sent the final into a deciding third set.

The pair traded breaks early in the third frame, before Kvitova - who won five titles in 2018 - broke at 4-4 and had a chance to close it out.

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Petra Kvitova has ended Ash Barty ’s hopes of a maiden WTA title on home soil, coming back to beat the Australian 1-6 7-5 7-6(3) in an epic Sydney International final . After Barty cruised to an opening set win in 29 minutes, world No.8 Kvitova served to stay in the match in the second and edged home

Petra Kvitova takes a thrilling three-set final to win her eighth WTA final in a row Ubi Tennis10:49 12-Jan-19. Sydney International : 'I couldn't imagine myself playing tennis Sydney International : Petra Kvitova wins thrilling Sydney International final over Ash Barty Sporting News08:47 12-Jan-19.

Barty upped the aggression again and broke back to level the score, but couldn't consolidate, with Kvitova immediately breaking back.

Kvitova's second attempt at serving it out was worse than her first, sending one forehand metres wide and double faulting again.She ended the match with 10 double faults and 45 unforced errors, but was too good in the tiebreak, taking it 7-3.

Despite the loss, Barty will be confident heading into the Australian Open next week.

In Sydney, she defeated three players ranked higher than her, with world number one Simona Halep, Elise Mertens (12) and Kiki Bertens (9) all being knocked out by the Aussie.

She gets her campaign underway against Thailand's Luksika Kumkhum on Monday night.

She has a potential third round showdown with Jelena Ostapenko, who she defeated 6-3 6-3 in the first round in Sydney.

Maria Sharapova and defending champion Caroline Wozniacki shape as possible fourth round opponents, with Kvitova, Andrea Petkovic and world number 11 Aryna Sabalenka all in the same quarter of the draw.

Kvitova will play Magdalena Rybarikova in the first round, with Petkovic, Barbora Strycova and Sydney International surprise package Yulia Putintseva all possible first-week opponents.

Earlier in the day, Alex de Minaur was too good for Gilles Simon in the pair's delayed semi-final, with the 19-year-old Aussie earning a spot in a second consecutive final against Andreas Seppi.

After persistent rain on Friday night, de Minaur was forced to play two matches in a day in sweltering Sydney conditions on Saturday.

'I have to be brave': Barty ready for biggest match of her life.
Australia's Ashleigh Barty faces her Sydney International conqueror Petra Kvitova at the Australian Open on Tuesday with a spot in the last four on offer.

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