Krejcikova gets back on track with victory over Swiatek

Oct 10 (Reuters) – Czech Barbora Krejcikova continued her splendor at the end of an injured season by defeating world number one Iga Swiatek in a French Open title match in Ostrava on Sunday.

The 2021 French Open champion reached the final of the WTA 500 in Sydney earlier this year, and she continued her strong form, reaching the quarter-finals of the Australian Open.

The 26-year-old climbed to a career-high No. 2 in February before missing several months with an elbow injury. She didn’t reach the semifinals again until she won two titles in consecutive weeks at home in Tallinn, Estonia and Ostrava.

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Krečkova defeated two-time French Open champion Swatek 5-7 7-6(4) 6-3, her first loss in the final since 2019.

“It was difficult because I thought the season had a great start,” Krejkova told the WTA after her victory in three hours and 16 minutes.

“Then with injuries and being out for so long, over three or four months, it’s hard to come back. It was mid-season and I was trying to find my form. I’m glad I found it and I’m back now.”

Krejcikova isn’t sure exactly what makes her happy, but thinks “a lot of work” has brought her back to her best, having beaten Swiatek, Wimbledon champion Elena Rybakina and world number three in the past two weeks Annett Kontaveit.

“I always feel like it’s there, it’s just hiding. I haven’t forgotten what I did last year. I still feel like it’s there,” she said.

“I’m really happy with what I’ve been through and what’s happened, it’s changed me, it’s given me extra energy. I think I’m a different player, a different person. I’m just happy to be in the big leagues One member is playing again.”

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Reporting by Sudipto Ganguly in Mumbai; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman

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