By Chris Oddo/ Thursday, October 24, 2013
After a wildly successful 2011, which featured a WTA Championships title, Petra Kvitova was the consensus pick to dominate the women's game.
Photo Source: AP
We tend to go way back into the archives for our flashback posts, but in today's edition we're going to take the first exit in our time machine to look at Petra Kvitova's amazing run at the WTA Championships in Istanbul in 2011.
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It had been a fantastic year for Kvitova, who broke out on the game's biggest stage to win Wimbledon, where she absolutely scorched Maria Sharapova in the final with a rare and destructive display of power and gunslinging that captured the imagination of pundits and took the racquet out of the hands of opponents.
That run at Wimbledon kick-started a lot of next big-thing talk about Kvitova, and pundits and former players were ticketing the Czech not only to reach No. 1 in the world, but also to become a multiple Grand Slam winner and—if all went well—maybe she could become the next best Martina Navratilova?
Kvitova started 2011 outside the top 30, but by the end of an amazing run in Istanbul, one that featured wins over then-world No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki, U.S. Open champion Sam Stosur in the semis and a wildly entertaining seesaw battle with Victoria Azarenka in the final, Kvitova found herself at No. 2 in the world and tabbed for world domination in 2012 by journalists far and wide.
Who could blame the hype machine? At that point Kvitova was in the midst of a remarkable 25-match indoor winning streak, and she was rising up and taking down all comers. Though it has ended, and with it a lot of the hype surrounding the Fulnek native, it is on an indoor hard court, where her high ball toss goes unmuffled by the wind and where the lack of heat or elements make it easier for her to unleash her all-out baseline blitz, where Kvitova still remains a feared opponent.
Two years later, Kvitova has not reached the heights that were projected, but at only 23 years of age, many believe that the potential is still there for Kvitova to dominate the women's game—if only she could talk 17-time Grand Slam champion Serena Williams into retirement.
Despite many ups and downs in the last two years, Kvitova has a mightily impressive 30-3 record indoors since the beginning of 2011. She'll take that record into her round-robin match with Williams, hoping to regain some of the magic that she found in 2011.
She'll be the underdog (heavy, heavy), but Kvitova will have her bright shining moment under the roof of the Sinan Erdem Dome to draw inspiration from.