Petra Kvitova  defeats Kateryna Bondarenko 6-2, 6-2
Petra Kvitova smiled and looked relaxed throughout her precisely one-hour long victory over the visibly frustrated Kateryna Bondarenko. The tone for the match was set when Kvitova began with a break of serve. This was her first match since Wimbledon, where she lost to Madison Brengle in the round of 64.
Kvitova did have significant trouble with her first service game. She double faulted once and missed four additional first serves before finally holding with an ace on a second serve. After finding her rhythm in that game, she cruised through subsequent service games without ever even giving Bondarenko a break point.
“I felt good today. I think I showed it especially in the second set. I think I had good preparation after Wimbledon. It’s always tough to get from the grass to the hardcourt. Especially, you know, I didn’t play a match for a month. Always a bit difficult but, I’m glad how I served today as well and everything kind of worked.”
In the past, Kvitova has skipped the California based US Open Series event in favour of the ones in colder climates, but she requested a wildcard this year in order to get more match play. For her debut match in Stanford, it was overcast and uncharacteristically cool on center court, with temperatures hovering around 80°F.
“I think it’s helped me today, for sure. I have asthma, so it’s always a bit difficult. Today was a perfect day for me, I have to say: cloudy day, no sun. I felt like it’s very comfy out there today. I think the next days will be more sunny. It will be fine but, it is how it is.”
With any luck, however, Kvitova could play night matches in the next two rounds, giving her a chance to enjoy significantly cooler conditions.
Kvitova will play CiCi Bellis in the quarter-final on Friday on Stadium Court, not before 7pm (3am Saturday, BST).
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