Kvitova upbeat after a horrifying year that nearly destroyed her career

Czech Republic’s Petra Kvitova in a past action in Strasbourg, Eastern France. [Photo:AFP]

Czech tennis star Petra Kvitova says a year on from being the victim of a horrific knife attack she can look to the future positively having successfully returned to the World Tennis Association circuit.

The 27-year-old two-time Wimbledon champion defied expectations in returning to competition despite suffering serious wounds to her playing left hand as she fought off a knife-wielding intruder at her home in the eastern Czech town of Prostejov in December 2016.

However, within months she had not only made a comeback but also won a title – the pre-Wimbledon tune-up event in Birmingham – and rounded off the Grand Slams with a quarter-final appearance in the US Open.

“Playing on the grass at Wimbledon (where she reached the second round) and getting a good result in the US Open was very important for me mentally, and for my confidence,” Kvitova told The Guardian newspaper.

“This year has been a rollercoaster. The beginning wasn’t very nice, so I’m really glad that it’s over. Now I can look at everything positively again.”

Kvitova – who reached a career high ranking of second in the world in December 2011 – says she shrugged aside fears she would never play again.

“I did hear the rumours that I would never ever play again but I thought: ‘I will show them’,” said Kvitova, who has been playing since she was four.

“I was like: ‘Why are they saying this?’ It was very painful for me, it felt like they didn’t believe me.

“The week after surgery I asked my doctor: ‘Do you think I could play in Wimbledon this year?’ He didn’t answer for a while and then he said: ‘We are going to work on it and blah, blah, blah.’ I understood then that it wasn’t going to be easy.”

Kvitova, who has 20 titles to her credit, admits her hand is still not what it was.

“It will probably take more than a year to get full movement back, I’m not sure,” said Kvitova, who is presently ranked 29 in the world.

“For tennis and for life, it’s good. I am happy that (throughout the recovery) I was always looking forward to the better tomorrows.”

Kvitova, who was told last month police had shelved the investigation as they had hit a dead end in identifying her assailant, says she has grown to love her ‘new hand’.

“I have started to live with my new hand,” said Kvitova, who will kick off 2018 in the WTA tournament in Brisbane, Australia.

“I’ve started to try to like it, to love it and that’s how I am going to take it. It’s my hand and I am just happy that I have all of my fingers.


Next Story
Sofapaka gets lifeline from Betika

Sofapaka gets lifeline from Betika

AK: Top stars snub Club Games set for Australia

Top stars snub Club Games set for Australia

Japanese star seeks next Wanyama

Former AC Milan attacking midfielder Honda to launch talent search programme

New Zealand thrash Kenya

New Zealand thrash Kenya

Theo Walcott completes £20million Premier League switch after 12-year spell at Arsenal

Theo Walcott completes £20million Premier League switch after 12-year spell at Arsenal

Jon Flanagan sentenced for assault

Liverpool defender sentenced to a 12 month community order

More Stories
Ruthless Nadal powers to first round win at Open

Rafael Nadal ruthlessly brushed aside Victor Estrella Burgos to power into second round of the Australian Open Monday.

Djokovic returns from injury with a bang at the Australian Open

Novak Djokovic won convincingly in the opening round of the Australian Open 2018 against American Donald Young.

Djokovic leads push for new union in pay fight amid fears of tournament boycott: reports

Novak Djokovic hosed down suggestions Tuesday he is pushing to create an independent players union to fight for more pay

Venus Williams crashes out in round 1 of the Australian Open

Last year's Australian Open finalist, Venus Williams, has crashed out on day one of this year's tournament on Monday.

Djokovic quiet as reports mount that he wants more money in Australian Open

Novak Djokovic has been drawn into a controversial allegation linking him with mobilizing tennis players in pay demand.

Roger Federer says he should not be favourite at 36

Roger Federer says a 36-year-old should not really be considered a favourite for the Australian Open.

Djokovic happy to be back from injury

Djokovic happy to be back from injury

Serena pulls out of Australian Open

Serena pulls out of Australian Open

Federer keeps expectations in check for 2018

Roger beat Rafa Nadal to win his fifth Australian Open

Murray takes it slow after injury woes

Andy Murray says his injury-ravaged season forced him to take a cautious approach to what he can achieve when he retires