Brilliant Garcia completes dream week with historic win in Cincinnati

The Frenchwoman became the first qualifier ever to win the Cincinnati title as she beat Petra Kvitova in straight sets

Caroline Garcia, Cincinnati 2022 Caroline Garcia, Cincinnati 2022 – AI / Reuters / Panoramic

France’s Caroline Garcia made history at the Western & Southern Open as she defeated Czech Petra Kvitova 6-2, 6-4 to win the title at the Lindner Tennis Family Center in Cincinnati on Sunday.

Garcia, ranked No 35, served brilliantly and maintained her focus and aggression throughout to win her third WTA 1000 title and become the first qualifier ever to win the title.

It was Garcia’s first WTA 1000 victory since 2017 and she has now won a WTA Tour-high 28 matches since June. She’ll return to the top 20 on Monday and will be seeded for the US Open, which begins on August 29.

“It’s hard to believe I’m standing here today,” Garcia said. “Thanks to all my team for staying with me and supporting me. It’s such a crazy road these last couple of weeks but I’ve really enjoyed it.”

Garcia too strong on the day

Kvitova had been trying to win her 30th career title but she was outplayed by Garcia, who completed the perfect week with another outstanding performance.

Having beaten Maria Sakkari and Aryna Sabalenka en route to the final, Garcia had the momentum but Kvitova was in her 40th final and had the experience going into the showdown.

But it was Garcia, attacking throughout, who raced out of the blocks, ripping through the first set and then leading 2-0 in the second before Kvitova took a rare medical timeout for what looked to be a thigh issue.

She returned soon after and continued to fight but Garcia would not be denied, saving all eight of the break points she faced as she clinched victory, sinking to her knees in joy after the final point went her way.

Czech Kvitova, the two-time Wimbledon champion, is closing in on a return to the world’s top 20 and said she was delighted with her effort.

“Beautiful week for me,” Kvitova said. “I’m really happy to have made the final at last. I was working pretty hard today for the trophy but congrats to Caroline, you had an amazing week. Good luck in the US Open.”

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