Madrid, April 27 (IANS) Jule Niemeier of Germany notched the second Top 10 win of her career after beating three-time champion Czech Republic’s Petra Kvitova in the second round of the Madrid Open on Thursday.
Niemeier saved two set points in the first set en route to scoring a 7-6(9), 6-1 upset of No.10 seed Kvitova. She will go on to face either No.24 seed Belgian Elise Mertens or Rebecca Marino of Canada.
Three-time Madrid champion Kvitova was in action for the first time since capturing her 30th WTA Tour title in Miami and competing in the 100th WTA 1000 tournament of her career. The Czech had been forced to withdraw from Stuttgart last week due to a right foot injury and fell to her fourth straight loss in Madrid.
The German’s win over Kvitova was just her fifth in 17 matches this year, and Madrid marked the first time she has won back-to-back matches since October 2022.
Niemeier sprang out to an early lead again in the tiebreak, only for Kvitova to come up with her biggest shots to save a further four set points. But Niemeier responded well, fending off two break points against her before taking advantage at 9-9 and converting her seventh opportunity.
With the first set under her belt, the World No.67 raced through the second as Kvitova continued to rack up a total of 53 unforced errors to only 24 winners.