Kvitova lines up Buzarnescu meeting in Birmingham semis


Standing between Kvitova and her second-straight Birmingham title is unseeded Slovakian Magdalena Rybarikova, who was a 7-6 (7-1), 6-4 victor over Barbora Strycova in the day's other semi-final.

Kvitova, on the back of fine serving, then roared back with consecutive breaks before levelling the match and then moved up another gear to dominate the final set with a string of powerful forehand winners.

Goerges had the firepower to really try and match the Czech from the back of the court and the German has gained so much belief on this surface after making the Mallorca final previous year, but Kvitova's standards on this surface are that much greater and it showed in this straight sets win today. But I'm fit and that's what is really making me happy, that I can nearly play every week and enjoy it because I had so many years that I didn't play.

Rybarikova has also played well on her way to the final, dropping just a single set along the way.

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Defending Nature Valley Classic champion Petra Kvitova is on the brink of a repeat win after beating Mihaela Buzarnescu in straight sets on Saturday. She will likely spend much of the match defending, though she is more than capable of getting on the front foot as well. She opened her tournament with an impressive 6-2 6-3 win over the third seed Karolina Pliskova, before dropping her only set of the tournament in a 3-6 6-2 6-1 comeback win over Frenchwoman Kristina Mladenovic.

"Yeah, I think she's pretty confident right now". "The nerves are always there, and I just try to play as well as I can and win".

"We're good friends [Magdalena and I], so it'll be a fun final". She has a little bit different serve as well. "When I was practicing before coming here, I couldn't really imagine to be here all week. I kept her longest in the match today". I beat her quite easy.

If she maintains this high level for another three weeks, everything seems possible for Kvitova, whose career looked seriously in doubt 18 months ago after a knife attack at her home in December 2016 which led to surgery for her left playing hand. Kvitova has generally had the measure of Rybarikova, winning five of these matches.