By Jane Voigt
Petra Kvitova thrilled audiences on Centre Court Wimbledon today in a display of bold, accurate, and explosive grass-court tennis seldom seen in the women’s game. Eugenie Bouchard would admit the same.
“She was just too good,” Bouchard told the press. “She put the pressure on me.”
Kvitova out served, out ran, and worked quickly to end points against Bouchard who was playing in her first Major final and carrying Canada’s flag as its first-ever in a slam final.
The occasion did not seem to bother Bouchard, at least that’s what she portrayed in her press conference. However, the the match was lopsided — 6-3 6-0 — and completed in 55 minutes. A couple times, Genie looked up at her box and raised her arms as if to say I don’t know what else to do.
Probably nothing could have stopped the momentum from Kvitova, though.
“I love to play finals,” Kvitova said, as reported by Wimbledon. “I love to play on the big stadium. Definitely I was in the zone, but I was still thinking ti is the final and I knew the emotion. My stomach is a little bit funny. It just goosebumps.”
This is Kvitova’s second Wimbledon crown. She first won in 2011 when, she admits, the aftermath was difficult to manage. Today, though, she felt differently.
“It was a big surprise in 2011,” she told ESPN. “I was a little bit young.”
From start to finish, this final was special. Kvitova filled the space under the closed roof with a tennis vista of beautiful strokes, angles an engineer dreams of, and serves that echoed throughout Centre Court with certainty and cracks of confidence.
“I had a great tactic [from my] coach,” Kvitova told Sue Barker, a Wimbledon icon, and BBC correspondent. “Thank you so much to David.”
Kvitova’s performance was praised on social media.
“Too good,” Darren Cahill, ESPN analyst and former coach, tweeted. “Wonderful display of tennis in [a] major final.”
Simon Cambers, one of the UK’s most recognized sports journalist tweeted, “I can’t remember seeing a better performance in a Wimbledon final than that. Bouchard didn’t even play badly. Kvitova was unstoppable today.”
Both women had a positive winners/forced errors ratio. However, the heft of Kvitova’s was weighty: 28/12 compared to Bouchard’s 8/4.
As Bouchard told the press. “I didn’t feel like I was able to play my game. I didn’t have that many opportunities.”
Bouchard’s reaction to her loss probably didn’t fill fans with much, given the Canadians blank gaze as she paraded around Centre Court with her trophy. But that’s Genie, driven and hard on herself.
She did laugh, a touch, in her press conference, which was aired on ESPN, when asked what she did when the two were taken inside after the match as the roof was being closed.
“I was watching them work [on entering Petra’s name on the wall of winners] and dreaming one day they’ll put my name somewhere,” Bouchard said.
She won’t think about a racquet, though, for some time. “I’m going to spend a lot of time on my couch. That’s my goal.”
On Monday, Bouchard is projected to be No. 7 in the WTA rankings. She is currently ranked No. 13, her seeding during the fortnight.