In Madrid, a city that loves to nap, Petra Kvitova finally got a chance to enjoy a well-deserved siesta on her day off, before she returned to the court on Tuesday to log her seventh consecutive match win.
The world No. 10 played her Madrid Open first round within 30 hours from her Prague Open final, claiming a sixth victory in as many days.
On Tuesday, she took her streak to seven in a row with a 6-3, 7-6 (8) success over Olympic gold medallist Monica Puig, who owned a clean 2-0 record against Kvitova prior to this week.
“I had a good treatment yesterday, I had a nap in the afternoon, a pretty long one actually as well, so I felt good this morning, which I’m very pleased with. I don’t have any injuries or anything, so it was a good day in the office today,” said a refreshed-looking Kvitova after securing a place in the third round in the Spanish capital.
While clay isn’t necessarily Kvitova’s favourite surface, she has enjoyed success on it. She won the Madrid trophy twice, in 2011 and 2015, and her current seven-match winning run has come on the red dirt.
The Czech two-time Wimbledon champion is having a brilliant 2018, having picked up titles in St. Petersburg, Doha and Prague. This time last year, she was preparing to return from a six-month hiatus following hand surgery for injuries she sustained in a knife attack at her apartment in December 2016.
She has since won titles on every surface, and went on a 14-match winning streak on hard courts from February to March this season.
“I need to enjoy them for sure, they are great streaks, I don’t have that many in my career anyway, so everyone is pretty excited. And this one as well, on the clay it’s very special,” said Kvitova, who next plays either Anett Kontaveit or Aliaksandra Sasnovich in round three at the Caja Magica.
“Yesterday we were saying with the team that I couldn’t really imagine coming back and winning four titles already, three this year, and it’s only May. It’s a big surprise actually for me.”
Meanwhile, two-time defending champion Simona Halep eased past an ailing Elise Mertens 6-0, 6-3 to set up a third round against qualifier Kristyna Pliskova.
Halep extended her winning streak in Madrid to 14 straight matches and ended Mertens’ 13-match winning streak. Mertens had come to the Spanish capital with back-to-back titles won in Lugano and Rabat but was dealing with a stomach illness since she arrived in Madrid.
— WTA (@WTA) May 8, 2018
Home favourite Carla Suarez Navarro put together a heroic performance to upset No. 4 seed Elina Svitolina 2-6, 7-6 (3), 6-4 – her fourth win in seven meetings with the Ukrainian. Suarez Navarro sealed her win on a crazy fifth match point, in which she fell on the floor while hitting a drop shot then got up and ended up securing the victory.
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