Indian Wells: Kvitova saves match points to beat Pegula on her fourth

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In what might have been the tensest match of the BNP Paribas Open tournament so far, Petra Kvitova defeated Jessica Pegula 6-2 3-6 7-6(11). Pegula, the world No.3, had her first match point serving at 40-30 up 5-4 in the third set, but was broken. The American went on to have three more match points in the tiebreak. Her 33-year old Czech opponent kept fighting and eventually won the match on her fourth match point.

Speaking with media after the match, Kvitova was clearly drained but her happiness was no less palpable. The 15th seed told the press that, despite the physical exhaustion, there is still a long process to fully unwind after a stressful night match.

Kvitova explained: “You know, on the bicycle 10 minutes, still you have to move, but then the fitness coach is stretching me. Since this point, I’m out and really trying to relax. I still have a lot of things to do, because I’m playing tomorrow. I have to be perfect.”

Kvitova’s quarterfinal match tomorrow will be a tough one, against Maria Sakkari. The Greek narrowly leads their head-to-head 4:3, having most recently defeated the Czech in the third round of the 2022 BNP Paribas Open 6-3 6-0 en route to the final.

Kvitova has been keeping an eye on the draw and results, telling media, “I know that she’s playing all three-setters here as well as me probably, so it will be really close one, for sure. I know what I have to play. I know I lost to her here in Indian Wells. I know probably everything so I just will try my best to play aggressive as I did today.”

The quarterfinal is scheduled for the Wednesday night session when the temperatures are cold and the courts slow.


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