Unseeded Barbora Krejcikova wins First Grand Slam Title at French Open

Barbora Krejickova 2021 French Open Final
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Unseeded Czech Barbora Krejcikova achieved a rare feat at Roland Garros, winning her first Grand Slam title 6-1 2-6 6-4 over Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, who was also contesting her first Grand Slam final. With both players in uncharted waters (Pavlyuchenkova had never advanced beyond the quarterfinals of a Grand Slam, while Krejcikova had never made it past the 4th round), it was a nervy rollercoaster of a match. Krejcikova started strong out of the gate and seized the momentum, winning every game of the first set after the pair split breaks of serve in the first two games.

Pavlyuchenkova proved her mettle though in set 2, regaining the momentum with a 3-0 start to the set (she also saved a break point in the opening game of set 2). Pavs would go 5-1 up, but a leg injury hampered her as she had to take a medical timeout to add strapping to her thigh, with her knee already taped. Clearly hampered from that point onwards, the third set was always going to be a challenge, and Krejcikova was able to regain the momentum despite struggling with her serve. After the pair traded breaks early in the third, Krejcikova got the decisive break at love 4-3, and came through a tight service game next for a 5-3 lead. Pavs would save two match points in the ensuing service game to extend the match, but was unable to break the Czech’s serve in the final game of the match, Krejcikova converting her fourth match point to seal victory. Both players clearly gave their all, and it was a quality final between two unexpected finalists.

The 25 year old Czech Krejcikova is also in the doubles final and will soar past her previous career high ranking of #33 in the world. She’s yet another WTA player to make a big splash in Paris, backing up her first slam will be its own challenge however. Krejcikova won her first WTA title and Grand Slam title in 2021, by far her best year ever.

For Pavlyuchenkova, she’s proven her mettle at the highest level, and had every chance to win her first slam, especially if she had not been hampered by the leg and knee injury. This promising player has a chance to make 2021 even better, and it’s quite possible we will see both players in Grand Slam finals in the future as they both played well above their rankings and gave us a great final.

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