Garcia flies past Kvitova in Cincinnati for 10th career title

Caroline Garcia has won more matches than any other player on the tour since June and now she can boast another WTA 1000 title for her excellent form.

France’s Garcia defeated Petra Kvitova of the Czech Republic 6-2, 6-4 in Sunday’s Western & Southern Open finals to win her third title of the year and a milestone 10th Hologic WTA Tour singles title overall.

World No. 35 Garcia took 1 hour and 42 minutes to oust 28th-place Kvitova, becoming the first qualifier to win a WTA 1000 title since the class was created in 2009.

starry summer: Garcia’s ranking fell to 79 this year, but nobody has been hotter on the circuit since Roland Garros. The former world No. 4 has won 27 main draw games since June, leading all players in that period.

Garcia clinched a grass-court title in Bad Homburg and a clay-court title in Warsaw this summer, and now she’s adding the prestigious hard-court title in Cincinnati to her 2022 achievements.

It’s an incredible return to winners’ circle at WTA 1000 events for Garcia, who won back-to-back weeks in Wuhan and Beijing in 2017 for her first two WTA 1000 titles of her career.

With a total of 33 match wins a year, only Iga Swiatek (50), Simona Halep (39) and Ons Jabeur (38) have more wins than Garcia this season.

Statistics corner: During her excellent run this summer, Garcia became the season’s leader, overtaking Wimbledon champion Elena Rybakina. Garcia added 11 aces in Sunday’s final to bring her total for the year to 286.

The power play with the big serves paid off especially for Garcia when he lost the break point. The French saved all eight break points she faced in the championship game as she extended her excellent win-loss record to 10-3 in the WTA singles finals.

key moments: Garcia jumped to a 4-0 lead in the first set en route to a one-set lead. Both players had more winners than unforced errors in the first set, but Garcia went 2-for-3 after break points while Kvitova was 0-for-4.

Garcia grabbed an instant break in the second set before Kvitova took a medical time-out for her leg at 2-0. Kvitova regrouped and almost retired on serve with a 40-0 lead at 3-2, but Garcia’s powerful serve helped her ward off that threat and maintain her break lead.

Two aces at 5-4 gave Garcia the double championship point and she capitalized on her first opportunity after another solid serve forced a brief return from Kvitova.

There’s more to come…

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