Simona Halep may be world No. 1, but Petra Kvitova is No. 1 on tour when it comes to titles.
Kvitova won her tour-leading fifth title on Sunday at the Nature Valley Classic in Birmingham, defeating Slovakia’s Magdalena Rybarikova 4-6, 6-1, 6-2 to successfully defend her title from last year.
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“I didn’t really expect to win here,” said Kvitova, who improved to 2-0 career against Rybarikova. “I just played match by match, being very happy to be on the grass and the tennis court…I couldn’t imagine to have five titles this time of the year, so I’m pretty happy already.”
The difference in the match was Kvitova’s 34 winners to Rybarikova’s 18.
“I think today was a great final to kind of fight,” Kvitova said. “We played over two hours, so it was a great final to watch I think, I hope.”
In the third set Kvitova ran to a 3-0 lead before closing it out at 6-2.
“The important thing was that I break in the first service game in the second set,” Kvitova said. “I was little bit more relaxed. Same thing happened in third set. Probably those early breaks made me more relaxed then.”
Kvitova improved to 25-7 in career finals and 5-1 this year. The 29-year-old Rybarikova fell to 4-4 in career finals, still looking for a first title since 2013 Washington.
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