Sydney International: Petra Kvitova books blockbuster final showdown against Ashleigh Barty

Paola Ditto
Gennaio 12, 2019

Ashleigh Barty reached the Sydney International final for the second year in a row and the home hope is now primed for a showdown with 2015 champion Petra Kvitova.

The Aussie faced no break points in the first eight service games but that all changed when Kvitova managed to break her in game 11 after some excellent defense, moving 6-5 up and wrapping up the set with a backhand victor in the next game to set up a deciding set.

Despite the disappointing end to the second set, Barty swiftly regrouped, using deep service returns to break for a 2-0 lead in the decider, and blasting an ace to claim a tough service hold for 3-0.

Ashleigh Barty in action.

The 22-year-old powered through the first set in 26 minutes, breaking the Czech's serve three times with her all-court game to wrap it up 6-1.

Yet Kvitova showed plenty of fight of her own, clawing her way back to 3-3 despite struggling with an apparent injury and, with her backhand finally firing, broke again to give herself a chance to serve for the championship.

In turn, it also handed Barty her second straight runner-up finish in Sydney, after losing to Angelique Kerber in last year's final.

"I left everything out here but it wasn't quite enough", Barty said.

Victory on home soil would cap a stunning week for Barty, who kicked off the tournament with a shock win over world number one Simona Halep.

"Not to win at home, I'm sorry", Kvitova said.

Kvitova apologised to Barty and the Sydney crowd for spoiling the Australian's Sydney party. "One day you're going to make it for sure, so good luck in the Aussie Open and well done this week".

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