US Open: Petra Kvitova inspired by Serena Williams after saving match points to defeat Garbine Muguruza | Tennis News

Petra Kvitova said she was inspired by Serena Williams saving match points to defeat Garbine Muguruza in a US Open thriller on Saturday.

A tense clash between the two former Grand Slam champions saw Kvitova save two match points to force a decisive tie-break before eventually taking her fourth match point in a 5-7 6-3 7-6 (12- 10).

Kvitova watched Williams’ emotional final match against Ajla Tomljanovic on Friday night, when she fought to the bitter end, finding the winners on five match points.

“I saw those match points when she didn’t give up,” said the Czech, in tears at the end. “She always made a great comeback. It was very special, she didn’t want to leave the court, that’s for sure.

“It was the same for me today. I didn’t want to get out of this tournament, so I was just there, sort of, suspended. She was also playing aggressively. Me too.

“So I was trying to go with those first serves or those aces. I think it was good to see her yesterday fighting until the end.”

Image:
Muguruza (left) congratulates Kvitova after an epic showdown between the two former Grand Slam champions

It was a tough loss for Muguruza, who finished last season winning the WTA Finals but struggled all year.

She did, however, receive encouragement saying, “I’ve had some tough defeats this year, but this one definitely makes me feel like my fighting spirit was there, my tennis was there. I probably need a little more confidence playing on those match points.”

Kvitova then meets the eighth seeded USA Jessica Pegula, who has become one of the most trusted WTA players. The Buffalo native defeated Chinese qualifier Yuan Yue 6-2 6-7 (8-6) 6-0.

Meanwhile, three-time finalist Victoria Azarenka again showed good form in New York and picked up a 6-3 6-0 victory over Petra Martic.

Last year’s US Open was all about the rise of teenage girls Emma Raducanu and Leylah Fernandez, and Kvitova is delighted to see the 30-somethings holding their own this time around.

“I’m very happy for myself, for Vika (Azarenka) and that kind of age,” said the Czech. “I feel like it’s good because we’ve been on the circuit for so many years, and I’m just happy that we can still get there and compete against the younger generation.”

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