Kvitova powers to second Wimbledon title

Kvitova powers to second Wimbledon title

Petra Kvitova produced a stunning display of hard-hitting tennis to defeat Eugenie Bouchard and win her second Wimbledon title.

The Czech fired 28 winners in a crushing 6-3 6-0 victory that took just 55 minutes.

It was a chastening experience for Bouchard in her first grand slam final, the 20-year-old Canadian simply unable to do anything to counter the brilliance of her opponent.

Princess Eugenie, whom Bouchard was named after, watched from the Royal Box but the queen of Centre Court in 2014 was undoubtedly Kvitova.

It looked like the roof would stay closed because of the threat of showers but, shortly before the match, the decision was made to open it and the two players took to Centre Court under cloudy skies.

Sixth seed Kvitova was back in a grand slam final for the first time since winning Wimbledon three years ago, finally ready to live up to the expectation that was placed on her shoulders.

The 24-year-old left-hander had flown a little under the radar during the fortnight, although her third-round clash with Venus Williams was one of the best matches of the tournament.

Most of the attention had understandably been on Bouchard. The Canadian’s swift rise has really caught the imagination – from junior champion two years ago to Wimbledon finalist and top-10 player.

But it was clear from the start she had her work cut out as Kvitova’s powerful forehand began to do its work.

The Czech was all over the Bouchard serve in the third game to take the first break and then withstood pressure to hold her serve.

The game-clinching point was among the best of the tournament so far, Kvitova showing remarkable defensive powers before scrambling a backhand winner onto the line. The crowd were clearly behind Bouchard but they cheered long and loud for that one.

The frustration with Kvitova over the past three years has been that she was clearly capable of so much more than she achieved, but on Centre Court she had again found her zone.

Bouchard fended off three break points to hold for 3-2 but the pressure was relentless and another forehand winner gave Kvitova the double break two games later.

Bouchard kept her hopes alive in the set by immediately retrieving one break but Kvitova pounced on the 13th seed’s serve again, taking her third set point with another terrific return.

Kvitova had gone into the 2011 final as a big underdog against Maria Sharapova but played a nerveless match, and she was doing the same as the favourite.

Bouchard stuck to her style of standing right on the baseline, but instead of applying pressure, it was giving her no time to counter Kvitova’s huge hitting.

The match was threatening to get away from Bouchard quickly as Kvitova raced into a 2-0 lead in the second set, this time her backhand finding the baseline.

Bouchard looked set to stop the rot in the fourth game but Kvitova was relentless, a stunning forehand pass making it deuce and two more huge forehands giving her a 4-0 lead.

Two games later she brought up a first match point and clinched it, appropriately, with a backhand winner.

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