2016 has been a tough year for Petra Kvitova. Notoriously streaky, Kvitova has experienced all of her normal lows, only without the meteoric highs.
Having not made a final since last October’s year-ending WTA Finals, Kvitova finally had one of her unstoppable weeks, beating Dominika Cibulkova 6-1, 6-1 in Saturday’s Wuhan final.
Kvitova made her week a successful one early by beating World No. 1 Angie Kerber in a three-hour-plus slugfest, but after surviving the next-day fatigue against Jo Konta, the two-time Wimbledon champ lost just five games in her final two matches against Cibulkova and Simona Halep, both top ten players.
As a result, Kvitova, 26, has now claimed two of the three winner’s trophies since the tournament’s inception, adding this year to the inaugural edition in 2014.
Kvitova’s year has been so poor that she still finds herself on the outside of the top 10, but she got back from 16th (far too low for her talent, even in her worst of slumps) to 11th, along with creating an outside shot at getting back to the WTA Finals if everything falls right this week in Beijing.
As for the other finalist, Cibulkova, she also overcame fatigue to put together an impressive week, as rain forced her to win her round of 16 and quarterfinal matches in the same day, after which she still managed to beat Svetlana Kuznetsova in a three-set semifinal. For her efforts, the 2014 Australian Open finalist is up to a career-high eighth.