Injured Kvitova out of Eastbourne, a week before Wimbledon

Solenn Plantier
Juin 26, 2017

Australia's Ashleigh Barty has lost to Petra Kvitova in the final of the WTA tournament in Birmingham, one of the key warm-up events for Wimbledon.

At Aegon Classic, only the second tournament after her return to competition, she proved that she's not only back in action, but also back in winning, dropping only one set in the entire tournament and defeating an in-form Ashleigh Barty to win her first title in Birmingham.

The 27-year-old Kvitova, who won Wimbledon in 2011 and 2014, was viciously attacked by a knife-wielding man on December 20 during a robbery attempt in her Czech Republic home.

Her last final on grass had been her triumph at Wimbledon three years ago against Eugenie Bouchard.

Barty, who had taken time out from the sport to play cricket in the Women's Big Bash League, had pulled off an upset in the semi-final, beating Spain's Garbine Muguruza, the 2015 Wimbledon runner-up.

"It was an incredible week, an incredible tournament".

Petra Kvitova is in a race to be fit for Wimbledon after withdrawing from the Eastbourne Invitational with an abdominal injury.

Kvitova hit seven double faults, but produced 13 aces and mitigated serving at 55 percent by winning over half of her second serve points.

"This victory is for my team and fans to say thank you for being with me in the tough times", Kvitova said later Sunday on Instagram.

"I think I couldn't have imagined a better comeback, for sure".

"We both started well and I served particularly well in that first set and I think it gave me the upper hand". She's always been a great champion but I think we appreciate that more now that she's back playing week-in and week-out.

"I'm very, very happy, of course", she said in her post-match press conference.

"It's so fantastic to have Petra back on the court".

It was another quick start for the Czech, breaking Barty at the start of the third set, but at 2-2, there was a flurry from the Aussie to break back. "She's such an inspiration", Barty, ranked No. 77, said afterward. I wish I could have more. "This is what I fought so hard to come back and play tennis for".

"I am excited. It doesn't matter if I have a title in my hands or not".

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